BJ Penn’s (pictured) return to mixed martial arts will have to wait for another day. On Monday, the UFC announced they were informed by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), the company the UFC hired last July to conduct year-round drug tests on their entire roster, that Penn revealed to them during a random, out-of-competition screening that he had illegally used an IV.
As a result, the UFC has pulled Penn from his UFC 199 contest against Cole Miller after receiving a “provisional suspension” from the USADA.
“The UFC organization was notified today that the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) informed BJ Penn of a potential Anti-Doping Policy violation. Penn disclosed the usage of a prohibited method – the use of an IV in excess of 50 ML in a six-hour period – during a March 25, 2016, out-of-competition sample collection,” the UFC expressed in a statement. “In accordance with the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, Penn has received a provisional suspension, and has been removed from his scheduled bout against Cole Miller on June 4 in Los Angeles.
“UFC will announce a replacement opponent for Miller shortly, and additional information will be provided by USADA and UFC at the appropriate time as the process involving Penn moves forward.”
Penn claims he was unaware that IVs are now banned throughout the year.
“I voluntarily disclosed to USADA that during a non-fight period that I had an IV administered under the care of a doctor,” Penn said on BJPenn.com. “The rule for IV usage had changed since my last fight in the UFC and was unaware of the change and voluntarily disclosed the information to USADA. I had no idea that IV use was banned 365 days a year.
“At no time in my career in martial arts have I ever doped and anticipate all test results from USADA will come back clean and will be working with the UFC to get the matter cleared up and return to fight as soon as possible.”
Penn, 37, came out of retirement for the third time in January. He initially called it quits after getting blasted by Nick Diaz at UFC 137 in October 2011. The Hawaiian decided to return to the cage 14 months later, but was once again was steamrolled, this time at the hands of contender Rory MacDonald.
Instead of walking away again, Penn decided to try and reinvent himself by dropping to featherweight. Unfortunately for Penn, Frankie Edgar rained on his parade and sent him on another trip to the retirement home – but not before thrashing his face with firsts and elbows.
It was arguably the worst Penn had ever looked during his UFC Hall of Fame career.
Penn, the only fighter in UFC history to don the lightweight and welterweight crowns, was hoping to rejuvenate his career in the featherweight division this time around.
UFC 199 goes down June 4 inside The Forum in Inglewood, California.
Here is the show’s updated lineup:
Cole Miller vs. TBD
John Makdessi vs. Mehdi Baghdad
Tom Breese vs. Sean Strickland
“Maestro” Dong Hyun Kim vs. Polo Reyes
Luiz Henrique da Silva vs. Jonathan Wilson
Kevin Casey vs. Elvis Mutapcic
Jessica Andrade vs. Jessica Penne
Clay Guida vs. Brian Ortega
Evan Dunham vs. Leonardo Santos
Dustin Poirier vs. Bobby Green
Max Holloway vs. Ricardo Lamas
Dan Henderson vs. Hector Lombard
Urijah Faber vs. Dominick Cruz (UFC bantamweight champion)
Michael Bisping vs. Luke Rockhold (UFC middleweight champion)