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UFC changes how it will test for marijuana

Maggie Hendricks
Cagewriter

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Pat Healy lost considerable money because of a positive drug test. (Getty)

The UFC has decided to follow the lead of the World Anti-Doping Agency and change the way it tests fighters for marijuana. In international fights where the UFC acts as a commission, the detection levels will be at a higher threshold. The commission in Brazil has also decided to change its threshold, meaning that a fighter will have had to use more marijuana to come up positive.

Marc Ratner, the UFC vice president of regulatory affairs, spoke about the change at a meeting of the Nevada State Athletic Commission. According to MMA Junkie, he also encouraged the NSAC to change its levels. Currently, state commissions decide their own levels for fights. Nevada, however, is one of the leading states in regulating MMA. If it changes its threshold, other states would likely follow.

Recently, the UFC has had to deal with several fighters who tested positive for marijuana. Pat Healy lost $130,000 in bonuses to a positive test after UFC 159. Matt Riddle had two positives and was cut from the UFC after the second one. Alex Caceres also tested positive in March. With attitudes and laws changing in the United States about marijuana, fighters being punished for marijuana use made little sense.

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