PED-Enabled Wins Should Become Losses, Not No Contests

Jeff Harder writing for Fightland:

… From this angle, PEDs have more in common with disqualifications—the eye pokes, groin shots, and other fouls that end fights—and DQs are labeled as defeats for the offending athlete. A fighter’s wins and losses should reflect the fact that they broke the rules, whether they kicked someone in the balls or stuck a syringe in their ass.

Of course, the true punishment comes from suspensions and fines, and reclassifying no contests as losses for PED users doesn’t do much to clarify the longstanding issues around drug testing. It also raises a few questions: does it make sense to declare a fighter that initially lost the winner?

Personally, I think it makes sense for the fighter who tested positive to have their record changed to a DQ loss, and for the clean fighter’s record to show a No Contest.

Overturning losses into wins would just be bizarre. It would create records that would feel factually inaccurate.

Either way, I agree that the true punishment for PED use comes from suspensions and fines. That should be the focus, alongside increased testing.