This headline wrote itself.
The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) announced Thursday that UFC middleweight Alen Amedovski (8-1 MMA, 0-1 UFC) has accepted a six-month suspension (later reduced to three months) after testing positive for Carboxy-THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis, on 4/20.
Amedovski, a Macedonian-born Italian, signed with the UFC ahead of the promotion’s April 20 event in St. Petersburg, Russia, also known as UFC on ESPN+ 7.
The two-fight Bellator veteran, then undefeated, lost a unanimous decision to UFC mainstay Krzysztof Jotko (20-4), but he has apparently also failed an in-competition drug test on the day of the fight.
Amedovski’s six-month suspension was reduced by three months after the “successful completion of a USADA approved drug awareness and management program,” according to USADA.
While Carboxy-THC is not prohibited outside of competition, USADA states that “the use of a substance or medication out-of-competition, that is prohibited only in-competition, may result in an anti-doping rule violation if the prohibited substance is still present in their body when tested at a competition.”
According to TIME, the history behind “4/20” and its association with the use of marijuana dates back to 1971, when a group of California high school students coined the term after routinely meeting a 4:20 PM to smoke. In years since, the term – as well as the date and time – has become synonymous with marijuana usage.
Originally, Amedovski’s suspension would have, beginning with the date of his testing failure on April 20, prevented him from actively competing in the UFC until October 20, 2019. By completing the USADA awareness program, Amedovski was able to reduce his suspension, now becoming eligible on July 20.
Amedovski will make good use of the shortened term, as the UFC announced Tuesday that the middleweight would face Wales’ John Phillips (21-9 MMA, 0-3 UFC) at UFC Copenhagen, also known as UFC on ESPN+ 18, on September 28.
Michael Fiedel is The Body Lock's deputy editor, a staff writer for FloCombat, and a Russell-Rice scholarship recipient at Vanderbilt University.