Breaking: Yair Rodriguez gets six-month USADA suspension due to whereabouts violations

Yair Rodriguez
Image via @ufc on Instagram

UFC featherweight contender Yair Rodriguez has been handed a six-months by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) due to repeated whereabouts violations.

USADA released a statement on the Rodriguez situation on Thursday (h/t MMA Fighting)

“Like all UFC athletes, Rodriguez, 28, is a member of the UFC Registered Testing Pool and is therefore subject to certain Whereabouts responsibilities, which allow him to be located for testing,” USADA officials explained. “Accurate Whereabouts information is a crucial component of an effective out-of-competition testing program because it enables anti-doping organizations to conduct no-notice sample collections, which helps maintain effective doping deterrence and detection.

“Rodriguez failed to update his Whereabouts information and was unavailable for testing at locations provided in his Whereabouts Filings on three occasions. He accrued a Whereabouts Failure in each of the first three quarters of 2020. The accumulation of three Whereabouts Failures within a 12-month period constitutes a policy violation under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy.”

It’s important to emphasize that Rodriguez has not failed a drug test, but is being penalized for failing to keep USADA updated on his location as it attempted to facilitate drug tests.

Because his suspension is retroactive to September 8, 2020, he will be eligible to fight again on March 8 of the New Year.

Yair Rodriguez has not fought since October of 2019, when he defeated Jeremy Stephens by unanimous decision. He was linked to a long anticipated scrap with Zabit Magomedsharipov in August, but the bout fell through when he injured his ankle.

News of Rodriguez’s suspension comes just days after UFC President Dana White hinted that the Mexican featherweight could be out for some time.

“I don’t think he’s going to fight soon,” White said of Rodriguez at the UFC Vegas 15 post-fight press conference. “I don’t know what the deal is. It’s actually none of my business what’s going on there. When it comes out, it will come out. It’s none of the UFC’s business. When they figure it out they’ll let us know.”

What are your thoughts on this unfortunate Yair Rodriguez situation?

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