February 23, 2024
Dryden McKay was in net at the 2022 NCAA Division I Men’s Hockey Frozen Four Championship semifinal vs. Minnesota at TD Garden on April 7, 2022 in Boston (photo: Rich Gagnon/USCHO).

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) announced Monday that former Minnesota State goaltender and 2022 Hobey Baker winner Dryden McKay has accepted a six-month period of ineligibility for an anti-doping rule violation.

In a statement, the USADA said that McKay tested positive for ostarine as the result of a sample collected on January 23, 2022, at McKay’s home.

Ostarine is an anabolic agent that is prohibited by the U.S. Olympic and International Ice Hockey Federation. At the time of the test, McKay was among a group of four players who were unannounced alternates for the Olympics.

During the USADA investigation, it was determined that an “all-natural” vitamin D3 supplement product McKay was using prior to the test which did not list ostarine on the supplement facts label was contaminated with that substance at an amount “consistent with the circumstances of ingestion and his positive test.” That provided the opportunity for a reduction of the period of ineligibility from what could have been as much as four years.

McKay responded to the suspension in a statement via Twitter and in an exclusive interview with Elliotte Friedman published Monday on the Canadian SportsNet website.

McKay wrote in the Twitter statement that he had received a suspension on February 1, 2022, which was lifted on February 3 when the source of the substance had been determined. McKay further wrote that the NCAA issued a separate decision in cooperation with Minnesota State which cleared him to play until a final suspension was issued.

In the statement McKay explained that he had been taking the non-NSF vitamin D3 supplement as an immune booster amid January’s Omicron wave. According to McKay, he stopped taking all supplements when the test results found the banned substance, withdrew from Olympic consideration, and sent all supplements he was taking to an independent lab.

“I made the mistake of taking it,” McKay told SportsNet. “But I could have never imagined that this would have been the result of taking something like that.”

“The level was explained to me by my attorney [Paul Greene], as so small it is comparable to a grain of salt in a swimming pool, therefore providing NO (sic) perfomance enhancing benefit to me whatsoever,” McKay wrote.

“This has happened to hundreds of people I’ve represented,” Greene told SportsNet. “Taking what seems like an innocent vitamin that turned out to be contaminated.”

McKay will be ineligible to play until October 11, 2022, after accepting a six-month period of ineligibility that began on April 14, 2022. McKay was granted a three-day credit for a provisional suspension served from January 31, 2022 through February 2, 2022.

According to its website, the USADA is recognized by the United States Congress as the official anti-doping organization for all Olympic, Paralympic, Pan American and Parapan American sport in the United States.