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Dana White: We’re loosening up marijuana rules, but you can’t fight while high

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UFC president Dana White talks about one of the longstanding drug-testing issues that lead to multiple fighter suspensions.

UFC 183: Silva v Diaz Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

On Wednesday, the Nevada Athletic Commission handed out suspensions and fines to two UFC fighters. Lightweight Kevin Croom and DWCS competitor Jose Flores were both given four-month suspensions for testing positive for cannabis.

Croom tested positive during a pre-fight screening for his Sept. 12 win over Roosevelt Roberts. He won’t be eligible to compete until Jan. 26 and will need to pay a reduced $1,800 fine. As for Flores, his suspension was in relation to his DWCS fight on Aug. 4, where he lost to Jordan Levitt via submission. He won’t be able to compete until Dec. 4 and will need to pay a reduced fine of $750.

Welterweight Niko Price was also tagged for testing positive for the banned carboxy THC in relation to his Sept. 19 fight against Donald Cerrone. The Commission will review his case next month.

UFC president Dana White heard about the suspensions for the first time when it was brought up to him during the DWCS 34 post-event presser on Thursday. According to him, the company had been working with the Commission to ease up on cannabis restrictions.

“We’ve been working on that for a long time, I’m surprised that actually happened. They must’ve been way over the threshold, then,” he told the media.

“I don’t think you can not test. When you’re in competition, you have to test these guys. You can’t let somebody go into the ring high. It just can’t happen,” White added. “I don’t know what to do with that. We’re trying to loosen it up, but at the same time, you can’t have guys showing up high.”

In 2013, the NAC already raised the allowable levels of cannabis metabolites in a fighter’s system. The threshold went from 50 ng/mL to 150 ng/mL, marking a 300% increase.