When the UFC holds events in the United States, an athletic commission oversees the proceedings. They handle medical tests, make sure bout agreements are in order, and take care of the drug screenings. When the UFC travels outside of the United States, the UFC handles the internal housekeeping.
UFC 152 is being held in Ontario, Canada and the province does have an athletic commission, but interestingly enough the regulatory board has yet to set up drug testing protocols. As such, when the UFC takes place on Saturday, the government entity will not be instituting any drug tests.
During this week’s press conference for tonight’s event, the UFC’s executive face in Canada (Tom Wright) said the company will instead handle the screening, stating “We will be drug testing the championship fights like we always do, and randomly we will test other fighters on the card.”
Although the UFC has tested and suspended fighters in the past – Chris Leben for one – some feel this is a case of the fox guarding the hen house. To help eliminate criticism, Wright explained an outside company would be handling the tests.
“We’ve contracted with a third party independent, but approved, drug testing facility and we will be doing those testings through the Ontario Athletic Commission. The athletic commission itself won’t be doing them, but we’ll be doing them through that,” he explained.
Wright also said the results would be made available to the athletic commission who would handle any penalties, concluding, “When the results come back, if there are any issues they will be provided to us; we’ll provide them to the Ontario Athletic Commission for them to issue any sanctions that they may desire.”
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC