Istela Nunes and Giacomo Lemos Latest UFC Fighters Suspended by USADA

Istela Nunes
Istela Nunes vs Gina Iniong Credit: ONE Championship

UFC athletes Istela Nunes and Giacomo Lemos never even made it to the octagon before running afoul of USADA and earning two-year suspensions.

Two Brazilian fighters have been hit with anti-doping violations before ever setting foot in the octagon. On Thursday, USADA (the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency), which oversees the UFC’s year-round drug testing program, announced that heavyweight Giacomo Lemos (6-0) had accepted a two-year suspension following a positive test for anabolic steroid drostanolone and its metabolite 2α-methyl-5α-androstan-3α-ol-17-one.

News of the positive test came as no surprise, as Lemos was pulled from a fight with Tanner Boser at UFC 240 in the summer. Boser himself revealed that the culprit was a failed drug test by Lemos.

Lemos’ ban will be backdated to July 9, 2019, the date the positive test was administered.

He’ll have some company in his time away from the sport. Another Brazilian fighter, Istela Nunes (7-1), has also been hit with a two-year suspension. USADA announced that news Friday. Nunes, a veteran of ONE Championship, tested positive for multiple stanozolol metabolites. That’s another anabolic agent, if you’re keeping score.

Her ban is backdated to July 22, 2019, when her positive sample was collected.

Coincidentally, neither fighter ever made it their respective debuts. While Lemos was expected to compete at UFC 240 against Boser, Nunes had been lined up to fight Angela Hill at UFC Mexico City in September. Hill wound up defeating Ariane Carnelossi instead.

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