UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre says he is willing to subscribe to Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency (VADA) drug testing in order to clean up the sport of mixed martial arts and send a message to fellow athletes.
“I believe the sport has a problem now,” St-Pierre told Showdown Joe Ferraro in Las Vegas ahead of UFC 162.
St-Pierre’s next fight is scheduled to be against Johny Hendricks on Nov. 16 in Las Vegas and the champion has invited the challenger to subscribe to VADA testing.
“When I first started fighting in mixed martial arts, it didn’t have any money,” St-Pierre explained. “So, now more money got involved, more ways are there to be cheating to take a shortcut and I believe VADA testing I’m up for it and I invite my opponent to do the VADA testing for the championship fight.”
GSP, who has never failed a pre- or post-fight drug test in his MMA career, also suggested voluntary testing should become a more common occurrence.
“I invite if possible all the high-profile athletes in the UFC to do the same. I believe it’s a good thing. It’s a bit of a pain in the butt sometimes but I believe to make the sport (better) … I’m ready to do it to set a good example.”
Like in any professional sport, every so often a mixed martial artist will test positive for a banned substance, and in the past several of GSP’s opponents — namely B.J. Penn, Josh Koscheck and Nick Diaz — have accused the Canadian of cheating.
“I’ve been accused in the past by many of my opponents,” St-Pierre admitted.
Last week on UFC Central Radio, GSP’s trainer Firas Zahabi said he believes if St-Pierre were to subscribe to VADA testing it would send a huge message to the entire sport of MMA and potentially change its culture.
“If Georges is champion and he’s clean, nobody has any excuses,” Zahabi said.
“I think (more frequent testing) would be good for the sport; I think it would clean up the sport,” Zahabi added. “The fans, they’re going to get to see two guys that are having a fair fight and I think people are going to enjoy that more.”