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Junior dos Santos pulled from UFC 215 due to potential USADA violation

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos is out of his UFC 215 fight with Francis Ngannou after being notified of a potential U.S. Anti-Doping Agency violation.

Per policy, the nature of the potential violation, which was the result of an out-of-competition test administered on Aug. 10, was not revealed. Potential sanctions, if any, won’t be decided until there is a formal hearing.

The 33-year-old dos Santos held the heavyweight title in 2011-12, both winning the title from Cain Velasquez and losing it back to him. He’s lost two out of his past three fights, including a first-round TKO loss to current champ Stipe Miocic at UFC 211.

There has not yet been a response from the dos Santos camp, who can appeal the results.

The UFC is working on finding a replacement opponent for Ngannou on the Sept. 9 card in Edmonton, Canada.

Ngannou, for his part, doesn’t seem to be giving dos Santos the benefit of the doubt.