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Nevada Athletic Commission approves severe drug test failure punishments, lifetime bans

It looks like the NAC is taking on the UFC's idea of harsher drug test enforcement and running with it, as they've approved plans for a whole slew of severe drug test failure punishments to go into effect later this year.

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

If you're a fighter for the UFC, things just got real up in here. More specifically, fans may remember a couple months ago, when the UFC made a big public announcement about how they were going to push athletic commissions to enforce much harsher drug testing policies and much larger punishments for drug test failures. The question, of course, was just how eager would athletic commissions be to take on this UFC proposal? It looks like the answer, at lest in Nevada, is "very."

The Nevada State Athletic Commission (NAC) rolled out a number of new drug testing measures on Friday, May 15th, including heavily increased punishments across the board for all number of drug testing violations. Most notably, fighters that fail a post-fight drug test will now be credited with a loss instead of a no contest.

Here's a look at some of proposed changes regarding the use of illegal substances:

That's right, the second offense for smoking pot will now land you a harsher sentence than using diuretics. There are a handful of UFC fighters who are already sitting right in those cross-hairs. Word is that the new punishments will go into effect starting September 1st, but for now the NAC has officially put them on the books. This is a major shift in the drug testing landscape for MMA, time will tell if it's actually for the better.

UPDATE: MMAFighting's Shaun Al-Shatti reported a couple of interesting additional points from the NAC's announcements:

UPDATE 2: Apparently the NAC has amended some of their own proposals. The updated regulations were posted by ESPN's Brett Okamoto on Twitter.