Ronda Rousey is smokin' mad about marijuana testing in her sport in the wake of the five-year suspension of UFC welterweight Nick Diaz, who tested positive for pot for a third time.
In an impassioned rant at the UFC 193 press conference in Melbourne Wednesday, Rousey said she was vehemently opposed to testing for marijuana, which she described as "an invasion of privacy" that "is only tested for political reasons." The UFC's reigning superstar also insisted that smoking weed has nothing to do with a fighter's performance in the Octagon.
Responding to a reporter's question about the hardships she endured early in her MMA career when she was dirt-poor and living out of her car, Rousey flipped the question to Diaz's pot-related suspension like the judo master that she is.
"It really pales in comparison to how unfair it is that Nick [Diaz] got a five-year suspension," Rousey said. "I’m sorry, but it’s so not right for him to be suspended 5 years for marijuana. I’m against testing for weed at all. It’s not a performance enhancing drug. And it has nothing to do with competition. It’s only tested for political reasons.
"They say, It's only for your safety to keep you from hurting yourself.’ You know what, then why don’t they test us for all the other things that could possibly hurt us, that we could be under the influence of when we're out there.
"There’s NO reason that we should be tested for weed. It shouldn't be involved at all. Nick is a really close and dear friend of mine so of course I’m going to defend him. It’s so unfair!
"If one person tests for steroids, that could actually hurt a person, and the other person smokes a plant that makes him happy, and he gets suspended for five years! Whereas a guy who could hurt someone gets a slap on the wrist. It’s not fair! It’s not fair at all. I can’t believe its not being said more. And you know what, I think we should free Nick Diaz."
Turning to UFC boss Dana White, who was standing at her side, Ronda continued:
"It's not Dana’s decision either; he had nothing to do with it. I’m sure if he’d had the choice he would have given him a lot less. I don’t think marijuana should be a part of the conversation at all. I think it’s an invasion of privacy for them to test for it, and they have no right." Watch Rousey's full rant here:
Rousey's eruption came after The Nevada State Athletic Commission suspended Diaz for five years on Monday because of the third marijuana-related offense of his career.
"I'm pretty pissed," said Diaz after the hearing. "I got into this sport for this exact reason, being stuck in a room with people like that.
"I wanted to tell them what I think. I wanted to tell each and every one of them they're a bunch of dorks. Everybody who sees them or knows who they are should tell them that. I would if it weren't for my experts advising me to keep my mouth shut. I wanted to get up and say, 'Look. You guys are way the fuck out of line.' "
Diaz, who fights out of Stockton, California, tested positive for marijuana metabolites following a decision loss to Anderson Silva at UFC 183 on Jan. 31.