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BREAKING: Daniel Rodriguez tests positive for banned substance; out of Noche UFC

9 months ago By Sports Desk

Daniel Rodriguez will no longer be competing at Noche UFC on September 16  in Las Vegas. ‘D-Rod’ was booked to face Santiago Ponzinibbio in a welterweight barnburner. However, the 36-year-old tested positive for Ostarine, a banned substance, in an out-of-competition USADA drug test. He has now been pulled from the card and will undergo further investigation. 

While Rodriguez has accepted the results, he maintains his innocence and claims to have never used any PEDs knowingly. He further speculated that the small amount of Ostarine came into his system via contaminated dietary supplements. 

Notably, USADA only suspends athletes for Ostarine if the levels are above 1 nanogram per milliliter. Moreover, the fighters must prove that the substance entered their system through a tainted supplement. Rodriguez will likely have a hearing before the Nevada State Athletic Commission to be able to compete in Las Vegas.

Daniel Rodriguez issued a lengthy and heartfelt statement on social media. Outlining his side of the story, he wrote:


“Following a communication from USADA today, I wanted to clarify the current situation to the media, my supporters, and everybody involved in the sport of mixed martial arts. Today I was notified that an out-of-competition sample that I provided to USADA was positive for an extremely low level of Ostarine. First and foremost, I want to clarify that I did not intentionally use Ostarine, nor have I ever knowingly used any prohibited substance in my career. I rarely take any form of supplements and have always strived to care for my body in natural ways.” 


He continued:

“I strongly believe that a supplement contaminant is the reason for my low-level positive, and am actively working with my Manager, USADA, and The UFC on reviewing and testing the supplements I took prior to my test. While I am extremely disappointed in this development and am now unable to fight on September 16th, I am looking forward to finding a definitive explanation for my low-level positive test. I am ready to fully cooperate with the USADA.”

As of now, the UFC hasn’t found a replacement for Santiago Ponzinibbio and his bout against Daniel Rodriguez stands canceled. 

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