Gordon Ryan Praises USADA’s Split With UFC: “The Athletes Will Be Healthier”

Gordon Ryan Praises USADA’s Split With UFC: “The Athletes Will Be Healthier”

The news that USADA is parting its ways with the UFC were shared last Wednesday, after USADA confirmed Conor McGregor had officially re-entered the drug-testing pool after a long absence from the program.

USADA CEO Travis Tygar shared the statement:

We can confirm that Conor McGregor has re-entered the USADA testing pool as of Sunday, October 8, 2023.

We have been clear and firm with the UFC that there should be no exception given by the UFC for McGregor to fight until he has returned two negative tests and been in the pool for at least six months.
The rules also allow USADA to keep someone in the testing pool longer before competing based on their declarations upon entry in the pool and testing results.

Unfortunately, we do not currently know whether the UFC will ultimately honor the six-month or longer requirement because, as of January 1, 2024, USADA will no longer be involved with the UFC Anti-Doping Program.

He, himself, expressed his disappointment with the UFC’s decision:

We are disappointed for UFC athletes, who are independent contractors who rely on our independent, gold-standard global program to protect their rights to a clean, safe, and fair Octagon.

However, not everyone shares his sentiment.
For example, Gordon Ryan is excited about the change – as he believes if UFC “goes back to the old days”, that it could bring progress to the sport and the athletes.

He shared reasons why – the first one being entertainment value:

The reason people watch professional sports is almost exclusively for entertainment value.
Few people who watch pro sports have any real desire to excel at those same sports, so really, they are just watching for the most entertainment.

The higher the testosterone, the more physical the athletes are, the less prone to injury they are, the faster they recover, the longer they can compete, and the more entertaining and high paced they are.
The better they look, the more attention they draw, the more money they make.

In Ryan’s opinion, it’s also about bringing more of an equal playing field for all athletes:

People think that just because athletes are being tested by USADA or WADA that they are natural.

With the amount of money, pride, and legacies on the line, BEATING drug tests has become a multi-billion dollar industry.
This means that the athletes who have money or are a part of big teams with the resources needed are able to actually beat the tests. This has historically been proven time and time again.

This means top-tier athletes have the money and resources to use PED’s and get away with it, and up and comers don’t. This creates an uneven playing field.
If there’s no testing, then every athlete can use what he or she wants, and the playing field is now level.

Read the rest of Ryan’s thoughts on the subject below. Do you agree with him?