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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Farah Hannoun and Ken Hathaway

Jiri Prochazka on USADA’s frequent visits: ‘If it’s the price to be the champion, I will pay that’

NEW YORK – UFC light heavyweight champion Jiri Prochazka has been drug tested a whopping 59 times in 2022 so far.

That makes Prochazka (29-3-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) by far the most tested athlete on the UFC roster this year by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

When asked at a Thursday news conference about the unusual amount of times he’s been visited, Prochazka only could laugh, but didn’t appear too fazed.

“Daily,” Prochaka said. “They’re coming daily, and sometimes it’s boring. Sometimes I’m tired from that. I’m waking up at 5 a.m. and I’m thinking, ‘They will come. They will come today.’ But if it’s the price to be the champion, I will pay that.”

The 30-year-old Czech fighter captured the 205-pound title from Glover Teixeira (33-8 MMA, 16-6 UFC) in a back-and-forth war at UFC 275 in June. The pair will rematch in the UFC 282 main event Dec. 10 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

USADA’s frequent visits caused concerns from Prochazka’s management, but the light heavyweight champ said though no specific reason was given, it’s the drug testing agency’s right.

“We spoke about that. My management talked with USADA about why, and it’s just the law,” Prochazka said. “They can do that, so they test me. For me, I’m good with that. It doesn’t matter.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 282.

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