With performance enhancing drugs, cannabis and physician prescribed TRT (also a performance enhancer), athletic commissions face a difficult task in providing adequate testing for so many athletes in combat sports. The expense of testing can exhaust state resources, and if you include more rigorous means, such as Carbon Isotope Ratio testing, only a handful of fighters could be met with these enhanced measures.
Lorenzo Fertitta hopes to change that, though, and has told Yahoo Sports that he will offer full financial cooperation with the commissions to have any contracted UFC fighter tested at any time. That offer would also include the more costly, extensive measures such as Carbon Isotope Ratio testing.
Eye denies test failure, documents say otherwise
Shortly after Jessica Eye appeared on the MMA Hour where she almost, but not quite, denied failing a drug test for Marijuana, official documents were released by the Texas Commission confirming her test failure for cannabis.
Yahoo went a step further and contacted the new NSAC chairman, Francisco Aguilar (not to be confused with Keith Kizer's vacated executive director position), who confirmed that Fertitta had indeed made the offer. He stated,
All that has ever been communicated to us from Lorenzo, Lawrence [Epstein, the UFC's chief operating office] and Marc [Ratner, its vice president of regulatory affairs] is that they're in favor of testing. At no point has the UFC ever pushed back on any testing request we've made. We just did an enhanced testing program with Travis Browne and Josh Barnett for their fight [in December at UFC 168] and the UFC was fully supportive and did what we asked. Not only haven't they pushed back, they've been the opposite. They've told us they've been open to any and all testing and would gladly pay for whatever tests we wanted to do.
Is Fertitta just paying lip service, or will we finally see the playing field a bit more level for all fighters? That's the $64,000 question, and we'll just have to see how it all plays out.