Former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar (pictured) was granted an exemption by the USADA, the independent third-party the UFC hired last July to conduct year-round drug testing on their entire roster, when he came out of retirement to fight Mark Hunt at UFC 200, and Hunt isn’t a happy camper because he claims Lesnar is “juiced to the gills.”
According to paragraph 5.7.1 of the USADA’s policy for the UFC, a fighter coming out of retirement may not compete “until he/she has given UFC written notice of his/her intent to resume competing and has made him/herself available for Testing for a period of four months before returning to competition.”
Although Lesnar and the UFC were in negotiations for his return for months, he didn’t put pen to paper until June 3 so the UFC is exercising the fine print in the USADA policy that allows them to grant Lesnar an exception to the four-month rule.
“UFC may grant an exemption to the four-month written notice rule in exceptional circumstances or where the strict application of that rule would be manifestly unfair to an Athlete,” the policy reads.
In an official statement, the UFC says they are treating Lesnar like a new athlete to the organization since their new drug testing policy wasn’t in play the last time Lesnar competed for the promotion in December 2011. “However, [the UFC] did notify Lesnar in the early stages of discussions that if he were to sign with the UFC, he would be subject to all of the anti-doping rules.”
Convenient, right? Hunt sure thinks so.
“I think he’s juiced to the gills, and I still think I’m going to knock him out,” Hunt told Fox Sports Australia. “I don’t think [the USADA exemption is] fair. I think it’s load of bulls**t, I think it’s rubbish. I don’t think anyone should be exempt from testing. If they’re trying to clean the sport up, mixed martial arts, this is a bad way to do it. I don’t care who you are. It’s ridiculous.”
Hunt brought his grievances to UFC president Dana White, but there’s nothing the UFC can do about it now. Although, it appears White revealed to Hunt that Lesnar has been tested since enrolling in the USADA program on June 6.
“I’ve already voiced my opinion to Dana about it, but apparently [Lesnar] has been getting tested but he’s probably been off a couple of cycles anyway,” Hunt said. “I don’t think it’s an even playing field. But it doesn’t mean you’re not going to get knocked out. Frank Mir was juicing and he got knocked out. The same thing’s going to happen with Brock Lesnar.”
Lesnar never flunked a drug test during his brief UFC career, which ran from 2008-2011.
The heavyweights battle in exactly one month at UFC 200. Lesnar can expected to be randomly tested by the USADA at least one more time before showtime.