Riddle: ‘I got fired over taking my medicine’
Matt Riddle came to the attention of the MMA community by breaking Dan Simmler’s jaw, in what UFC president Dana White called the biggest KO in TUF history. Despite never having had a professional fight outside the UFC, Riddle went 10-4 overall in the organization, including a four fight win streak, or sorts.
Although he was awarded four wins in a row, two were changed to a NC for testing positive to marijuana metabolites. Riddle has been released for the infractions, despite the fact that he is prescribed medical marijuana by a physician in Las Vegas.
In an interview with BJ Penn Radio, Riddle discusses his shock at the entire affair.
“They (UFC legal department) hit me up yesterday morning and said I had failed a drug test,” Riddle told BJPenn.Com Radio. “I still don’t know how it’s possible; I quit smoking three weeks out from the fight. I’ve passed drug tests when I quit two weeks out from a fight; it’s just crazy to me. I asked for my numbers and they sent me a form that just said I tested positive for marijuana. It didn’t say how much, it just said I was over the amount.”
”It is what it is I’ve failed two drug tests in seven months. There’s not much I can do I was prescribed my medicine and I’m going to take it. I got fired over taking my medicine because I don’t want to take pharmaceutical drugs or testosterone. This is what works for me, it’s just s—-y, but it is what it is.”
“They said if I go out, win a couple of fights and pass a couple of drug tests, I’ll get a call back. At this point I’m going to do my own thing, I’m going to fight and hopefully it’s not too hard to line something up. I just want to get some fights lined up and keep moving.”
“It (Marijuana) doesn’t just help me sleep, it relaxes me. It also takes care of my aches and pains. I’ve had four surgeries since I joined the UFC and I had knee surgery before I signed with them. Even taking ibuprofen makes me sick, I get nauseous and it hurts my stomach. I can’t even handle anything stronger than that, I’m not allergic to it, I just can’t stomach it.”
“I never wanted to cheat, the rules are I can’t fight and have it in my system, I understood that completely. I’ve always taken precautions in the past, the only time I failed before this was when I fought in Calgary and that was because I took the fight on less than a week’s notice”.
“I still don’t know how I failed this drug test; I really don’t know how I could’ve failed it. I fluctuate like 15lbs. a day during my training camps because I workout two to three times a day. If it’s a hard workout I’ll lose about 7lbs. and gain it right back. I had 21 days, I know people who have passed in seven days, and I’ve passed in less time. I got a call from the legal department yesterday and I was just shocked.”
“It does bother me, for some reason the UFC hates people that smoke weed. The whole MMA industry for some reason hates people that smoke marijuana. I don’t know why, I keep to myself for the most part. I smoke weed and I fight. Usually I put on exciting fights or I dominate people, I always go out there and fight. It’s stupid that I got fired over a plant, but other people think it’s stupid that I just won’t stop smoking. I quit three weeks before my fight and this is what works for me. If you were me or lived with me you’d understand.”
“I knew it might come up one day and I thought about going to talk to a lawyer, but for now I’m just trying to figure out my next step. I’m not too worried, but at the same time I just can’t sleep on it. The only good thing is the athletic commission didn’t suspend me because it was a UFC administered drug test. They can’t suspend me so I can fight tomorrow, but I’d fail a drug test tomorrow though so I’ll wait a month or so!”