Conor McGregor’s Return to the Octagon in Doubt as USADA Deadline Passes

McGregor's octagon return hangs in the balance as USADA deadline passes.

Conor Usada
Conor Usada - Image credit @thenotoriousmma Instagram

Conor McGregor, the renowned Irish MMA fighter, may not make his highly anticipated return to the Octagon this year as he failed to meet the USADA (U.S. Anti-Doping Agency) deadline. After a two-year absence, McGregor was expected to face off against Michael Chandler, another notable fighter, and potentially headline a pay-per-view event later in the year.

The prospect of McGregor’s comeback generated significant excitement among fans and garnered attention from the MMA community. UFC President Dana White had previously discussed the potential matchup. However, it now appears that this highly anticipated fight may not come to fruition.

The main reason for this uncertainty lies in the requirements set forth by the USADA. Any UFC fighter must enter the USADA testing pool at least six months before stepping into the Octagon. Following his leg injury in 2021, McGregor temporarily withdrew from the testing pool and has not undergone any recent tests.

Concerns have arisen as McGregor has put on weight during his recovery, raising questions about his readiness for competition. The deadline for him to re-enroll in the testing program, in order to be eligible to fight this year, was June 16, 2023.

Conor McGregor’s USADA Testing Pool Dilemma

MMA Uncensored reports that McGregor has yet to enter the USADA testing pool, casting doubt on his scheduled bout against Michael Chandler. However, an official statement from the parties involved is still awaited, leaving fans in suspense.

The potential absence of McGregor’s return to the Octagon would be a disappointment to many fans eagerly anticipating his comeback. It would also impact Michael Chandler, who has been diligently preparing for what could have been one of the most significant fights of his career. Nevertheless, if the McGregor-Chandler matchup fails to materialize, Chandler may have other viable opponents waiting for him inside the cage.

One such fighter who has recently expressed interest in facing Chandler is Arman Tsarukyan. Following a third-round knockout victory at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Tsarukyan, ranked eighth in the lightweight division, called out Chandler for a potential future fight. Tsarukyan emphasized that McGregor’s current situation makes him skeptical about their planned bout taking place this year.

Fans are now left to ponder the possibilities: Will Arman Tsarukyan get his desired matchup against Michael Chandler? And will Conor McGregor’s much-anticipated return to the Octagon be further delayed, potentially into next year? The answers to these questions will be revealed in due course, as the MMA world eagerly awaits updates from the fighters and the UFC.

Published on June 20, 2023 at 10:34 am
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