Conor McGregor ‘s Uncertain UFC Return: Antidoping and Setbacks

by | Aug 22, 2023 | MMA

Until a few days ago, Conor McGregor was confident that, even without fulfilling the minimum requirement of six months of reintegration into the USADA’s antidoping program, he would be allowed to compete in the UFC in December. However, it seems that something has shaken the Irish fighter’s conviction.

In a series of audio posts on his official ‘X’ profile (formerly Twitter) that were later deleted, McGregor changed his tone and expressed pessimism about the possibility of returning to the UFC octagon this season. The renowned athlete from the organization presided over by Dana White – one of the most financially successful athletes across all sports in recent years – went further, stating that he’s facing difficulties in sustaining himself.

“They won’t let me fight in December, ladies and gentlemen. You saw Chris Weidman (at UFC 292). Imagine what that injury is. I feel like I’m being kept away from my livelihood, and I’ve been feeling this for years. I won’t complain publicly. I’ll remain brave and persistent. I’m ready. I wanted an announcement for December 16 (at UFC 296). I’ve given everything. So, it’s not going to happen. Doesn’t seem like it’s going to happen,” Conor stated.

Conor McGregor hasn’t participated in UFC fights since July 2021 when he suffered a severe leg injury during a bout against Dustin Poirier, requiring surgery. During his recovery period, the former UFC champion left the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) antidoping program and consequently stopped undergoing testing by the organization.

The Irishman’s physical transformation during this time has led to speculations about the possibility of his use of prohibited substances, such as anabolic steroids. After theoretically recovering from his injury, McGregor began hinting at his return, which was planned for 2023 against his rival from the television show “The Ultimate Fighter 31,” Michael Chandler, most likely.

However, time has passed and, so far, there’s no evidence that McGregor has returned to the UFC’s antidoping program, overseen by USADA. In order to fight in 2023, the fighter known as ‘Notorious’ would need to undergo a minimum six-month period of clean testing before being deemed eligible to compete again in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Consequently, the only opportunity for the former champion to step into the octagon in December this year would be through an exception granted by the regulatory agency, which doesn’t seem to be the case and has sparked criticism.

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