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Thread: MMA & Drugs

  1. #1
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    MMA & Drugs

    With today's NYT article, it's time for a drugs in MMA thread like our drugs in pro-wrasslin' thread.

    Drug Testing Hasn’t Grown With a Sport
    By MICHAEL WEINREB
    Published: July 3, 2007

    He insists he has never used performance-enhancing drugs, but Jamal Patterson, a mixed martial arts fighter in the International Fight League, says he has been presumed guilty for years.

    “People tell me, ‘You must have done something,’ ” he said in a telephone interview from Hoboken, N.J. “But genetically, I’m just a freak.”

    Patterson wrestled in high school and played football at Colgate University. He is 6 feet tall and has slimmed down to 205 pounds for his career in the I.F.L., a team-based mixed martial arts league, which is among several organizations striving to bring this once-underground sport into the mainstream.

    Patterson, who competes for the I.F.L.’s Pitbulls, says he knows how crucial public perceptions can be in a pursuit that combines punching, kicking and grappling, and that casual observers sometimes still confuse with professional wrestling.

    The sport of mixed martial arts encountered doping problems last month at an event at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Royce Gracie, a pioneer of the sport, tested positive for the steroid nandrolone; Tim Persey tested positive for methamphetamine; and Johnnie Morton, a former N.F.L. receiver making his M.M.A. debut, had a higher-than-normal ratio of testosterone to epitestosterone in a prefight test, then declined to take a required postfight test. All three were later suspended.

    Performance-enhancing drugs would certainly give mixed martial arts fighters a tremendous physical benefit because they can aid strength, endurance and recovery. But mixed martial arts, a young and booming sport, has no national or international governing body and lacks a rigorous drug-testing policy.

    “Part of the problem is that there are all these small organizations that fight in garages and on Indian reservations and in strip clubs, and there’s no drug testing, and the rules are very limited,” said Kurt Otto, the commissioner of the I.F.L. “We need to legitimize every aspect of it.”

    But Gracie and Morton were competing in a major event, promoted by Fighting and Entertainment Group, which is based in Japan and also promotes K-1, one of the top mixed martial arts organizations.

    K-1, like the I.F.L. and the Ultimate Fighting Championship, the two most popular mixed martial arts organizations in the United States, relies primarily on state athletic commissions, which sanction mixed martial arts events in the same way they do boxing and other combat sports, to handle drug testing immediately before or after fights. But this means that in some states, not every fighter will be tested, and those who are tested will know roughly when it is coming.

    “In general, I think this should not be done by the government,” said Dr. Gary I. Wadler, an associate professor of medicine at New York University who has served on several committees for the World Anti-Doping Agency. “It should be done by an independent and transparent agency that’s invested in seeing a drug-free sport.”

    Drug-testing programs run by athletic commissions differ from state to state. In New Jersey, which has held several mixed martial arts events this year, all fighters are tested. A positive test for performance-enhancing or recreational drugs results in a 90-day suspension, according to Nick Lembo, counsel to the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board. A second positive test results in a minimum six-month suspension and mandatory enrollment in an inpatient drug treatment facility. A third positive results in a minimum two-year ban. The law also requires that other states honor those suspensions, Lembo said.

    California recently began testing all fighters. Gracie was suspended for a year from the date of the fight (June 2) and fined $2,500, pending his appeal.

    But at least one state does no drug testing at all.

    “Our policy is that it’s up to the promoter to do the testing,” said Patrick Shaughnessy, a spokesman for the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, which sanctioned 23 mixed-martial events in 2006 and 13 through June 30 this year.

    The Ultimate Fighting Championship held its first event in Texas in April in Houston, and none of the fighters were tested, said Marc Ratner, the U.F.C.’s vice president for regulatory affairs. “That doesn’t make sense to me,” he said.

    Ratner, who spent 13 years as executive director of the Nevada State Athletic Commission, said the U.F.C. hired an independent laboratory to test four fighters at an event last month in Ireland.

    Ratner also said that the U.F.C. had a clause in every fighter’s contract reserving the right to test randomly. Those tests, for performance-enhancing and recreational drugs, Ratner estimated, have been used only about half a dozen times. He said none had come up positive.

    Neither the Ultimate Fighting Championship nor the International Fight League have a formal policy for the punishment and appeals process for fighters who fail a drug test.

    Otto said he hoped the I.F.L. would have a program in place before the 2008 season begins. The league recently reached an oral agreement with USA Wrestling aimed at luring college wrestlers into the league, and Otto said he would work with national wrestling officials to develop a policy.

    His hope, he said, was that mixed martial arts would eventually become an Olympic sport, which would mean it would be under the jurisdiction of the United States and World antidoping agencies.

    Patterson and Pitbulls Coach Renzo Gracie, a cousin of Royce Gracie, said they hoped the I.F.L. would adopt random testing. “It’s not a witch hunt,” Gracie said. “It’s what the sport asks for.”

    Otto was hesitant about whether the league would enlist an independent organization to oversee testing.

    Travis Tygart, general counsel for United States Anti-Doping Agency, said independent oversight was a necessity with any testing program.

    “Hopefully these new sports will recognize that they’re going to have to face these issues down the road, so they might as well do it now,” Tygart said. “They have to ask themselves: Are we going to hold on to the true value of sport? Or are we just going to be pure entertainment?”
    The Jonny Morton thread is slightly related.
    Gene Ching
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  2. #2
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    Performance enhancement drugs are a part of life in sports, we just have to decided if we want them there or not.

  3. #3
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    Comments on the comments

    From AOL Sports....

    Not Enough Drug Testing in MMA?
    Michael David Smith
    Posted Jul 3rd 2007 8:20AM by Michael David Smith

    Under the headline "Drug Testing Hasn't Grown With a Sport," the New York Times has an article today saying mixed martial arts "has no national or international governing body and lacks a rigorous drug-testing policy."

    It's an interesting piece and it's worth reading, especially after Royce Gracie, winner of the first Ultimate Fighting Championship (pictured) tested positive for steroids. But it suffers from the fundamental flaw that much of the mainstream media coverage of mixed martial arts has: It doesn't seem to fully grasp the distinction between the Ultimate Fighting Championship and other mixed martial arts organizations.

    At one point, the article refers to "the I.F.L. and the Ultimate Fighting Championship, the two most popular mixed martial arts organizations in the United States." That's kind of like saying "Arena Football and the NFL, the two most popular football leagues in the United States." It's true, but it doesn't quite capture the huge gap in the leagues' popularity. UFC is by far the most popular mixed martial arts league, and IFL isn't even close.

    UFC has a drug testing policy that, while it could be strengthened, has done a lot to take the league into the mainstream. Lumping UFC in with other, smaller mixed martial arts organizations is inaccurate and unfair.
    Gene Ching
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  4. #4
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    Jamal Paterson


    People who likely ARE doping

    I don't get how people could mistake his talent for doping... It's not like 'roids are hard to see in a high level athlete...
    Quote Originally Posted by Oso View Post
    you're kidding? i would love to drink that beer just BECAUSE it's in a dead animal...i may even pick up the next dead squirrel i see and stuff a budweiser in it

  5. #5
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    This Thread has plenty of links about MMA athletes and steroids.
    What's the point

  6. #6
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    I'm dissapointed Gracie's test came back hot...... so much for BJJ's *Proven* results now...it's all chemically enhanced.
    Last edited by Royal Dragon; 07-03-2007 at 04:14 PM.
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    I'm dissapointed Gracie's test came back hot...... so much for BJJ's *Proven* results now...it's all chemically enhanced.
    Dude that is a huge stretch of a comment. Roids does not instill skill, gameness or dedication to one's craft.

    Deca did not give him these things.
    Last edited by Black Jack II; 07-03-2007 at 05:01 PM.

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    Yeah, gameness comes from not showering.

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    The vast majority of drugs should be labeled "training enhancement" drugs rather then "performance", simple because they allow one to train harder, longer with less recovery.
    Sure there are some that taken that day of competition can boost performance, but usually one takes them to improve the training stage, like steroids.

    Nevertheless, we as specators must decide, so I want to see a 11 sec 100 meter dash or a 9.79 ?
    Do I want to see 1000lbs deadlift or a 700 ?
    Do I want to see an someone the looks like an athlete of a freak?

  10. #10
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    Becca,

    You can't "see roids." Lots of guys out here who take steroids aren't doing it to get huge or cut or ripped.

    Steroids basically work like this, without getting into specifics: They improve protein synthesis and use in the body. This directly translates to improved damage repair, which directly translates to improved recovery time. They can also improve (or worsen) mood etc, depending. Side effects from steroids vary from roid to roid and person to person.

    Anyway the point is that steroids allow you to train harder, longer, more often. This is why they are so popular in cycling. Those guys aren't exactly behemoths...

    While you might gain some muscle mass depending on what you are doing, it is only if you choose to train in a way that increases your muscle mass that you're going to see those kind of results. *shrug*

    As to steroids in the sport, you bet. Of course they are there....they're there in the amateur competitions even worse, and I've got almost complete suspicion that one guy I've competed against was taking steroids, and sheer odds tell me there were probably more. ESPECIALLY in the "submission grappling" side of the house, which seems to attract its share of thuggish tough guys *sigh*. Gi doesn't seem to attract the same demographic exactly the same, for some reason.
    "In the world of martial arts, respect is often a given. In the real world, it must be earned."

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  11. #11
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    Ah. I see now. I guess I never really looked into what they do. I just bought into the hype about only vain people using them to get big. Even a cyclist is boud to want to be ripped, right? I could see the point in blood doping, but never realized you can get similar benifits from 'roids.

    I guess it's more than just vanity. It also makes it harder to discide if it is wrong or not. I have been frusterated many a time when I couldn't train as hard as I might want to, and I don't have a pay check riding on it. It's a big rist to the fighter's health but, then again, fighting is a big risk to the fighter's health. One part of me wants to say that it is the athlete's desision wether or not they damage his/her body this way. But then again, should those who choose not to be handi-caped that way? Do the drugs really boost the performance enough to make an otherwise lack-luster fighter better?

    Tough call.
    Quote Originally Posted by Oso View Post
    you're kidding? i would love to drink that beer just BECAUSE it's in a dead animal...i may even pick up the next dead squirrel i see and stuff a budweiser in it

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    Merry is right, but from a groundlevel perspective there are a LOT of different people with different set viewpoints out there on why they are taking roids.

    The old guy trying to stay fit, the young bucks thinking its a body in a syringe, the lifter, the smuck who stacks everything under the sun.

    Personally I think they should be legal to consenting adults but its not my call.

  13. #13

    another one

    http://sports.yahoo.com/box/news?slu...yhoo&type=lgns

    I believe that Royce initially retired from UFC back in the day 'cuz of the roided fighters. Somewhere's around UFC 3 or 4.

  14. #14
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    Musta been that back bacon...

    ...or Canadian bacon...whatever they call it...

    Canadian MMA fighter Bill Mahood suspended after positive steroids test

    Canadian mixed martial arts fighter Bill (The Butcher) Mahood has been suspended for one year and fined US$2,500 after testing positive for steroids, according to the California State Athletic Commission.

    Mahood tested positive for Drostanolone at the Sept. 29 StrikeForce at the Playboy Mansion show, the commission said Monday.

    The native of Prince George, B.C., lost to Bobby Southworth in the first round that night, submitting because of an injury. Mahood's purse was US$1,000.

    The 40-year-old Mahood, whose record is 16-6-1, is a veteran fighter who has competed in the UFC, Bodog, King of The Cage and TKO circuits.
    Gene Ching
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  15. #15
    CSAC: Adam Smith Tests Positive for Steroids, Cocaine and Marijuana

    Posted by MMA Junkie on October 17, 2007 at 2:35 pm ET

    Adam Smith has made mixed-martial-arts history — for all the wrong reasons.

    The California State Athletic Commission today announced that Smith, who dropped a unanimous decision to Dewey Cooper last month at a Strikeforce show, has tested positive for anabolic agents with metabolites for both Nandrolone and Stanozolol. In addition to those steroids, the CSAC announced earlier this month that Smith also tested positive for cocaine and marijuana.

    Smith becomes the first athlete in the state of California to test positive for anabolic agents and drugs of abuse at the same time.

    With the two failed tests, Smith is now suspended a total of 21 months and fined a total of $4,000.

    According to paperwork filed with the CSAC, Smith earned just $500 for the fight.

    “Strikeforce at the Playboy Mansion” took place Sept. 29 in Beverly Hills, Calif. The event was streamed online at Yahoo! Sports, though Smith’s bout appeared on the un-televised undercard.
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