One of college hockey's top players narrowly avoided a four-year suspension.
The United States Anti-Doping Agency announced on Monday that Minnesota State goaltender Dryden McKay has accepted a six-month suspension for violating the organization's anti-doping regulations.
McKay, who won the Hobey Baker Award this year as the top player in the NCAA, reportedly tested positive for Ostarine, which is a banned substance in the United States, after undergoing testing prior to the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing on Jan. 31, 2022.
After testing positive, McKay withdrew from the Olympics and hired lawyer Paul Greene to represent him.
According to a report from Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman, McKay tested positive due to a supplement he was taking to protect against COVID-19 unknowingly being tainted with Ostarine, which was not listed among the product's ingredients.
If McKay and his camp had not been able to prove that the supplement was tainted through an independent lab test, the 24-year-old would have faced a massive four-year ban that would have likely derailed his potential professional career significantly.
“If we didn’t figure out where (the Ostarine) came from, he was going to get four years,” said McKay's lawyer to Friedman.
“The only reason we got the reduction is because we figured out where it came from, and his degree of fault was very low. He’d been very careful about looking at the label.”
As per the terms of his suspension, McKay can return to practicing with teams on Aug. 25 and will be eligible to play games on Oct. 11.
According to Friedman, that may be important, as there is interest from NHL teams in McKay after he became just the third goaltender in NCAA history to win the Hobey Baker this season.