Dequan Townsend Sanctioned for Cocaine, Fentanyl; Still Slated for UFC Raleigh on Jan. 25

By: Tristen Critchfield
Jan 8, 2020


Dequan Townsend has accepted a six-month suspension from USADA after testing positive for cocaine and fentanyl metabolites in an in-competition urine sample submitted on June 28.

Townsend’s failed drug test came in relation to his third-round technical knockout loss to Dalcha Lungiambula at UFC on ESPN 3 in Minneapolis. Both cocaine and fentanyl are prohibited in-competition, but Towsend was able to receive a reduction from the default two-year sanction by proving the banned substances did not enhance his in-cage performance and entering a drug rehabilitation program.

As a result, Townsend completed his sanction on Dec. 28, six months from the date his positive sample was collected. Townsend will be able to remain on the UFC Fight Night 166 card in Raleigh, N.C., where he will square off against Bevon Lewis on Jan. 25.

Townsend made his Octagon debut against Lungiambula on short notice. The Lansing, Mich., native owns a 19-9 professional record that includes bouts in numerous promotions on the regional circuit.

The full USADA statement regarding Townsend is as follows:

USADA announced today that Dequan Townsend, of Lansing, Mich., has accepted a six-month sanction for a violation of the UFC® Anti-Doping Policy after testing positive for prohibited substances. Townsend’s reduced period of ineligibility from the default two-year sanction remains contingent upon his successful completion of a USADA approved drug rehabilitation program.

Townsend, 33, tested positive for benzoylecgonine, a metabolite of cocaine, and norfentanyl, a metabolite of fentanyl and its derivatives, as the result of an in-competition urine sample he provided on June 28, 2019 at UFC Fight Night Minneapolis, where he lost by technical knockout. Cocaine, a non-Specified stimulant, and fentanyl, a Specified narcotic, are prohibited in-competition and considered Substances of Abuse under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy and the UFC Prohibited List. .

Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, athletes may receive a reduced sanction for Substances of Abuse if they can establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the violation did not enhance, and was not intended to enhance, the athlete’s performance in a Bout and they subsequently complete a drug rehabilitation program. .

Townsend’s six-month period of ineligibility began on June 28, 2019, the date his positive sample was collected.
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