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Romero's manager: Tainted supplement caused USADA violation

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Yoel Romero and his manager stated today that a tainted supplement was to blame for his failed USADA drug test.

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

According to Yoel Romero and his manager Malki Kawa, the middleweight UFC fighter did not knowingly ingest an illegal substance. They claim that it is a tainted supplement to blame, and that's why Romero failed a USADA drug test in the weeks after his UFC 194 win over Ronaldo Souza.

The two men were guests on The MMA Hour earlier today, and Kawa explained the circumstances behind the failed test (via MMA Fighting):

"The substance has a label with a bunch of stuff on it," Kawa said. "None of that is illegal to take. What he got popped for is not on the label. So it's obviously not his fault that he popped for this."

Kawa would not disclose the name of the sample, but stated that both his team and USADA have tested the supplement and it did indeed contain the banned substance.

So if that's true, what will it mean in terms of punishment for Romero? He could be facing up to a two-year ban for failing a test, but Kawa doesn't think that will be the case:

"I don't expect it to be two years," Kawa said. "I don't think two years would be fair."

According to the article, MMA Fighting attempted to contact USADA regarding the issue but had not heard from them yet. Romero stated that he would take responsibility for taking the supplement, but that the label says it was clean so he should be able to take it. Kawa also noted that Romero had passed his pre-fight and post-fight tests at UFC 194, and the whole supplement issue came afterward.