UFC fighters Ruslan Magomedov and Zubaira Tukhugov have been accepted two-year suspensions by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency following the use of banned substances.
Magomedov, 31, and Tukhugov, 27, both tested positive for ostarine following out-of-competition urine tests conducted on September 7, 2016. Tukhugov also tested positive for ostarine following an out-of-competition urine test conducted on October 29, 2016.
Because Tukhugov’s second positive test resulted from a sample that was collected before he was notified of his first positive test, both of his positive tests were treated as a single violation of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy.
Both fighters told the USADA that the positive test results were due to a contaminated supplement. However, the USADA was unable to confirm that and elected to not reduce the two-year maximum suspensions for both fighters for the non-specified substance.
Magomedov’s and Tukhugov’s cases were consolidated, allowing for a single presentation of the athletes’ defenses to the independent arbitrator. During a multi-day hearing, the athletes presented testimony and submitted evidence in an attempt to support their supplement contamination claims and request for a reduced period of ineligibility.
Nevertheless, after two days of testimony, USADA informed Magomedov and Tukhugov that it was still unwilling to consider a reduced sanction because it did not believe supplement contamination was a valid explanation for their positive tests. Thereafter, and before the conclusion of the hearing, USADA and the athletes reached an agreement to resolve the case, with Magomedov and Tukhugov each accepting a two-year period of ineligibility and agreeing to contribute a total of $10,000 toward the costs of the arbitration proceedings.
The suspensions date back to a start of September 26, 2016, meaning they will be eligible to return next September. Pursuant to the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, all UFC athletes serving a period of ineligibility for an anti-doping policy violation are required to remain in the USADA registered testing pool and make themselves available for testing in order to receive credit for time completed under his or her sanction.