One of the more recent complaints on the new USADA policies being implemented in the UFC starting July, was the ban on using IVs to rehydrate after weigh-ins. As it has been a regular practice in MMA to fully rehydrate by that method, a lot of fighters have already voiced out against the topic on social media.
UFC bantamweight Anthony Birchak is no exception, and one of his biggest gripes was that the reason for the ban isn't even about controlling weigh cuts.
"It's not to control fighters cutting too much weight. They're searching for cheaters, guys who are blood packing, blood doping," he said on a recent periscope session. "The way they check it is plasticides on your urine. Basically, whatever residue is on the inside of the plastic IV bag, drains into the solution, and you piss those chemicals out. That's how they see if you've been using an IV"
According to the USADA, fighters aren't allowed to use a bag over 50 ml without a TUE, which would only be given to those with medial needs for it. This is primarily to catch PED users instead of trying to curb too much weight cutting, and one of the short term results could mean more fighters competing while not properly hydrated.
"I think it's f----ng dumb. A lot of fighters are going to get knocked out. Guys cutting a lot of weight will have to move back up," he continued. "I just saw Ian Entwistle get pulled out. I know that guy is huge and probably used 3 or 4 bags to get back up in weight."
"It's shitty. I had a very good friend of mine got knocked out because he didn't rehydrate properly. They're going to expect us to go out there and fight and not be fully hydrated to the max. We run a big chance of getting knocked out. It's f----ng shitty."
Birchak is coming off a KO win over former title challenger Joe Soto. Watch the clip above for his entire take on the topic, and how he plans to get rehydrated before fights.