Dana White reacts to Cris Cyborg being flagged for potential doping violation
When UFC president Dana White hoped to launch the new women’s featherweight division he wanted 145-pound wrecking machine Cris Cyborg as the anchor for the new weight class.
White later revealed that he offered Cyborg a trio of opportunities to compete for the inaugural featherweight title in the UFC but on all three occasions she turned down the fights. Cyborg later stated that her body was still recovering from a brutal weight cut to get to 140 pounds for her fight in September.
On Thursday it was revealed that Cyborg tested positive for Spironolactone, a diuretic that is banned at all times for athletes competing in the UFC. White heard about the news just before TMZ caught up with him in New York while he was promoting the upcoming fight between Holly Holm and Germaine De Randamie that will crown the new 145-pound champion.
“I had offered three fights to Cyborg and she turned them all down. Then we just found out, Cyborg tested positive for a banned substance from USADA. USADA handles it, we don’t. There will be some back and forth and we’ll see how this thing plays out,” White said.
“First of all, I was offering these fights at 145 pounds. First fight she had eight weeks to get ready, second fight she had 11 weeks to get ready, and the third fight she just turned down and I thought it was strange that she was turning down all these fights. Not so strange now.”
Cyborg has claimed that she was prescribed the medication by her doctor to help her recover from the taxing weight cut to get down to 140 pounds for her last fight in September.
Unfortunately, Cyborg failed to request a therapeutic use exemption with USADA prior to using the drug and depending on the outcome of her adjudication process she could be looking at a suspension of at least one year for the infraction of the UFC anti-doping policy.
While that process will have to play out over time, White says it worked out for the UFC that the promotion had already booked a different fight for the 145-pound title with Cyborg out of the picture.
“It’s funny how things work,” White said. “I ended up making this Holly (Holm)-Germaine (De Randamie) fight at 145 (pounds), which is perfect now.”
As far as Cyborg’s future goes, White couldn’t make a prediction on what would happen next.
He did reference Cyborg’s previous failed test in 2011 when she tested positive for steroids, which resulted in a one-year suspension from the sport. For now, White will take a wait and see approach while Cyborg deals directly with USADA to figure out what happens next.
“This will be the second time (she’s failed a test),” White said. “I don’t know. We’ll see how this thing plays out.”