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USADA issues one-year ban for UFC flyweight Matheus Nicolau following failed drug test

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UFC flyweight Matheus Nicolau has been suspended after he failed an out-of-competition USADA test.

UFC flyweight Matheus Nicolau was banned for one-year following a failed out-of-competition USADA test in October, which resulted in his removal from a UFC card in November. The official USADA press release has details on what the Brazilian tested positive for.

Nicolau, 24, tested positive for anastrozole following an out-of-competition urine test conducted on October 13, 2016. Anastrozole is a specified substance in the category of Hormone and Metabolic Modulators and is prohibited at all times under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, which has adopted the WADA Prohibited List. Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, the standard sanction for a doping offense involving a specified substance, like anastrozole, is a one-year period of ineligibility.

Nicolau’s suspension is retroactive to the date of the failed test, so he will be eligible to compete again in mid-October of this year.

Testing positive for a specified substance carries a one-year ban, which is what Jon Jones and Brock Lesnar both received when they tested positive for clomiphene. Anastrozole is an aromotase inhibitor, as is letrozole, which is the other substance Jones tested positive for.

Nicolau (12-1-1) competed on season 4 of The Ultimate Fighter Brazil, where he reached the semifinal stage before losing to Dileno Lopes. He made his UFC debut against Bruno Rodrigues in November 2015, winning by Japanese necktie. Nicolau raised his profile with a unanimous decision win over former title challenger John Moraga last July, and he soon found himself ranked in the top-10 at flyweight. Prior to the drug test failure, Nicolau was set to fight Ulka Sasaki at UFC Fight Night: Bader vs. Nogueira 2.

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