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How Big a Drug Problem Does Mixed Martial Arts Have?

On March 31, the California State Athletic Commission began a new program for testing boxers and mixed martial arts fighters. The results have not been good: Less than three months of testing has yielded about 20 positive tests, with 90 percent of the positives coming from competitors in mixed martial arts.

So just how big a problem does the sport have with performance-enhancing drugs? One of the ways that the Ultimate Fighting Championship transformed itself from the fringe to the mainstream was by embracing drug testing, and there's no reason to think UFC has any more athletes using steroids than there are in other pro sports.

But mixed martial arts shows outside UFC often don't have drug tests, and that has the potential to tarnish the sport's image. If mixed martial arts is ever going to shed the "human cockfighting" label once and for all, it has to be perceived as clean, and that will only happen when every single competitor is tested.

Previously at FanHouse:
Report: Royce Gracie, First UFC Champion, Tests Positive for Steroids
Johnnie Morton Tests Positive for Steroids at MMA Debut

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