Thanks to a pair of positive tests for an estrogen blocker known as Hydroxy-clomiphene, it appeared as if the fighting careers of Jon Jones and Brock Lesnar might be put on hold for the foreseeable future. Recently, however, rumors have begun to pick up steam that both men’s suspensions could be coming to an end a lot sooner than predicted, with Lesnar telling us not to rule out a potential UFC return and Dana White going so far as to book Anthony Johnson against Jones in a hypothetical #1 contender match.
What could be the reasoning behind all of this sudden optimism? Well, it turns out that Hydroxy-clomiphene is technically considered a “specified substance” under the World Anti-Doping Agency Code and not “banned substance” as was originally believed when the two were handed out their temporary suspensions. According USADA code, “there is a greater likelihood that these (specified) substances could be susceptible to a credible non-doping explanation.”
MMAFighting offers some additional insight into the case:
When it comes to specified substances, the WADA Code recognizes that it is possible for a prohibited substance to enter an athlete’s body inadvertently, “and therefore allow a tribunal more flexibility when making a sanctioning decision.”
Important to note that if an athlete is found with a specified substance in his or her system, they could receive as little as a public warning, and if the athlete chooses not to accept the sanction from the USADA, they have the right to go to arbitration, which is normally overseen by the American Arbitration Association, a group independent of USADA.
And not only that, but the other substance Jones tested positive for (Letrozole metabolite, an aromatase inhibitor that may or may not have been caused by Cialis) is also considered a specified substance, and therefore, not punishable under the same guidelines as a regular anti-doping violation.
There is one caveat in all this good news, in that both Lesnar and Jones will be facing separate suspensions and fines from the Nevada Athletic Commission at their hearings later this year which don’t have to adhere to any of USADA’s rulings or guidelines. There is no set date for either Jones or Lesnar’s hearings as of now, but we’ll make sure to keep you informed as this story develops.
As for how Lesnar’s UFC 200 opponent, Mark Hunt, is taking this news? Our guess would be…not great.