UFC release statement explaining unusual exemption that left Joe Rogan flabbergasted 5 years ago

UFC release statement explaining unusual exemption that left Joe Rogan flabbergasted

The UFC have cleared up the confusion surrounding Ian McCall's comments on Fight Companion.

The flyweight star dropped a bomb very early into Joe Rogan's podcast about his health issues that led to his fight against Jarred Brooks being scrapped from UFC 208.


McCall looked set to return to the Octagon for the first time since January 2015 and weighed in successfully. However, the day of the event he was taken to hospital with gastrointestinal problems and his return fell through.

"When I was trying to gain the weight back, I couldn't hold onto anything. I just kept throwing up... So I woke up Saturday morning at 131, so I had only gained five pounds and four of those pounds had been because the UFC gave me two IV bags."

The use of IVs to help fighters recover from weight cutting is banned in the UFC. Recently, BJ Penn was suspended prior to his scheduled comeback fight against Cole Miller at UFC 199 after he admitted to using an IV out-of-competition.


So when McCall dropped this nugget of information that he was given the go-ahead to use this banned method of rehydration, Rogan had some questions.

"How much did you cut... UFC gave you IV bags? Wait a minute, you were allowed to use an IV?"

"I thought you can't use an IV and then fight... but isn't that the whole thing about cutting weight is that it's much more difficult now because you can't use an IV? So they gave you an exemption?"

'Uncle Creepy' revealed that he was given an exemption and that UFC Vice president of Athlete Health and Performance Jeff Novitzky was with him when he received the IVs.

"I got some sort of exemption, but I didn't even have to get an exemption because I ended up getting pulled from the fight... Jeff (Novitzky) came up to my room, Dr. D, they were all with me the entire time."


Rogan was still confused.

"So what the fuck, man? Can you use an IV or you can't use an IV?"

McCall admitted that he was too sick to fully understand the situation, but confirmed that he was given two IV bags after being granted an exemption.

"You can’t use an IV unless you get an exemption. Which, I don’t know the rules, and then again I was also sick the whole time so I don’t know what the fuck was going on. They gave me the two IV bags, and I ingested maybe a pound of water of whatever myself, that’s the only thing I could keep down."


McCall was perfectly entitled to an exemption, according to a UFC statement sent to MMA Fighting. It explained that the fighter was granted permission to use the IV because of how urgently he required it to treat his acute medical condition. It added that McCall has since applied for retroactive therapeutic use exemption from USADA.

Check out the statement in full below.

“UFC was aware of the situation regarding Ian McCall in advance of UFC 208, and his need to receive treatment for an acute medical condition via a prohibited method under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy. Prior to McCall receiving treatment, UFC was in communication with USADA and the New York State Athletic Commission regarding his condition. McCall has since submitted a retroactive therapeutic use exemption request to USADA – who is responsible for reviewing the use of any prohibited substance or method during the course of medical treatment.

"Under the UFC Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) Policy, to receive approval of a TUE, athletes must submit medical records demonstrating a verifiable medical diagnosis and legitimate medical need for the requested medication or method in accordance with the applicable guidelines. Further, it must be determined that the athlete pursued and exhausted all non-prohibited alternatives to treat his condition and would return the athlete to a normal state of health without providing a performance-enhancing benefit.”


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