USADA officials today announced three-time UFC featherweight title challenger Chad Mendes has been given a two-year suspension after failing a drug test related to a growth hormone.
Mendes (17-4 MMA, 8-4 UFC) was tested out-of-competition via a urine sample on May 17 and came back positive for GHRP-6, or growth hormone-releasing Hexapeptide, according to the website for the UFC’s anti-doping partner.
GHRP-6 is classified under the substance category of peptide hormones, growth factors, related substances and mimetics, and it is banned year-round by WADA, to which USADA is a signatory.
Per USADA, the standard sanction for an anti-doping policy violation involving a non-specified substance is a two-year period of ineligibility. Mendes also has been “disqualified from all competitive results obtained on and subsequent to May 17, 2016, the date of sample collection, including forfeiture of any title, ranking, purse or other compensation.”
Mendes’ suspension is retroactive to June 10, the day which he received a provisional suspension pending the resolution of his case. USADA’s statement does not specify whether the 31-year-old fighter, who most recently suffered a knockout loss to ex-champ Frankie Edgar at The Ultimate Fighter 22 Finale, accepted the punishment.
Twice fighting unsuccessfully for the featherweight belt held by now ex-champ Jose Aldo, Mendes stumbled one year ago in an interim title bout against current champ Conor McGregor. He’s issued only a short statement since his positive test.
It’s been one year since the UFC contracted USADA to run its anti-doping program. The third-party firm is currently managing two high-profile cases stemming from UFC 200, with interim champ Jon Jones (22-1 MMA, 16-1 UFC) and ex-heavyweight champ Brock Lesnar (5-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) both failing out-of-competition tests and Lesnar failing a fight-night test.
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