Jeff Novitzky offers warning to UFC fighters after what happened to Dan Ige

April 24, 2019

When a person knocked on Dan Ige’s door early last Thursday morning asking to collect blood from him, he never questioned why.

As a member of the UFC roster, Ige is subjected to year round random drug testing from USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) where they will routinely show up to collect blood and urine samples.

After giving his blood, the tester asked Ige his name and that’s when he started to realize something as off. It took him a moment to realize but Ige soon figured outo that the person collecting his blood was looking for someone else in his neighborhood but because he was so accustomed to answering the door for USADA around the same time in the morning, he never questioned it.

“Dan Ige, that was the most coincidental of circumstances I’ve ever heard of,” UFC vice president of athlete health and performance Jeff Novitzky said when speaking to the UFC Unfiltered podcast. “He’s used to USADA coming pretty early in the morning to test him and one day last week he got a knock on the door around the time that USADA would come, 6-6:30 a.m., he opens the door and an individual says ‘I’m here to take your blood’. So he sits down, they start taking his blood and he notices it’s a lot more than they usually take so he starts asking some questions.

“Well it turns to find out at the end of the collection the person was there for a neighbor on a neighboring street with the same number of his house. It was a person getting blood drawn for lab work. Unfortunately for Dan, the collector left before he realized anything or collected his thoughts. So he was very worried that someone was walking around with three vials of his blood.”

According to Novitzky, he got involved after Ige notified him what happened and he was able to track down the laboratory that had intended to draw blood from a patient rather than the UFC fighter.

“We got involved and encouraged him to both go to law enforcement and then we called into the laboratory and as of the end of last week, the laboratory provided him with some documents that they disposed of the blood and there was nothing sinister behind it and an honest mistake,” Novitzky revealed.

Novitzky says the bizarre set of circumstances make what happened to Ige a ‘one in a million’ situation but it still serves as warning to all UFC fighters giving samples in the future.

“It’s a good lesson for all of our athletes, whenever USADA or a representative that they contract with throughout the world comes for a collection, they’re going to have a credential to show, they’re going to have paperwork from USADA, if they’re not USADA authorizing the collection,” Novitzky said. “So all UFC athletes should always ensure that they see that documentation before they provide a sample.”