Ruslan Magomedov and Zubaira Tukhugov Both Suspended Two Years by USADA

Two more UFC fighters have been suspended for two years following positive drug tests recently as performed by USADA

UFC athletes Ruslan Magomedov and Zubaira Tukhugov have been suspended for two years by USADA following violations of the UFC’s anti-doping policy.

USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) officials announced on Thursday that both athletes went through the adjudication process together while having their cases brought to arbitration after claiming that they were the victims of a tainted supplement.

Magomedov and Tukhogov tested positive for Ostarine following out of competition drug tests administered on Sept. 7, 2016. Tukhogov also tested positive for Ostarine during another test taken on Oct. 29 but because he hadn’t been notified of the first failed drug test, USADA lumped both violations into one occurrence.

Ostarine is listed as an anabolic agent and banned at all times by USADA.

Magomedov and Tukhogov submitted their cases together to be heard by an independent arbitrator but ultimately the verdict returned was still for a two year suspension from the sport.

“Magomedov’s and Tukhugov’s cases were consolidated, allowing for a single presentation of the athletes’ defenses to the independent arbitrator. During a multi-day hearing, the athletes presented testimony and submitted evidence in an attempt to support their supplement contamination claims and request for a reduced period of ineligibility,” USADA officials said in a statement. “Nevertheless, after two days of testimony, USADA informed Magomedov and Tukhugov that it was still unwilling to consider a reduced sanction because it did not believe supplement contamination was a valid explanation for their positive tests. Thereafter, and before the conclusion of the hearing, USADA and the athletes reached an agreement to resolve the case, with Magomedov and Tukhugov each accepting a two-year period of ineligibility and agreeing to contribute a total of $10,000 toward the costs of the arbitration proceedings.

“Magomedov’s and Tukhugov’s two-year periods of ineligibility began on September 26, 2016, the date the first of the athletes’ provisional suspensions was imposed.”

Both Magomedov and Tukhogov will be eligible to return to action after Sept. 26, 2018.

Magomedov was ranked as a top 15 heavyweight prior to his suspension while Tukhogov was 3-1 in the UFC through his first four fights in the promotion.

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Damon Martin is a veteran mixed martial arts journalist who has been covering the industry since 2003 with bylines on FOX Sports, CNN, Bleacher Report and numerous other outlets.