Chael Sonnen got tapped out on Tuesday. Not by a rear-naked choke, arm-bar, or round house to the head, but by a drug test.
Blind-sided by a Nevada State Athletic Commission drug test over the UFC 173 fight weekend, Chael Sonnen’s results came back positive for two banned substances, reports Fox Sports.
Both are anti-estrogen drugs that are generally administered to women. However, in Chael Sonnen’s case, the UFC fighter was using the drugs to help his body get back to producing natural testosterone.
According to Sonnen, he suffers from a disease called hypogonadism and treating that condition required using testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) for several years. So when the Nevada commission banned the use of TRT, Sonnen was left without the synthetic testosterone replacement, and had no choice but to use the anti-estrogen drugs to try to help kick-start his natural testosterone production.
Speaking with Jay Mohr on Fox Sports Radio, Chael Sonnen explained:
“They changed the ruling in Nevada earlier this year, doing away with the TRT, testosterone replacement therapy, and I was on that. So when they changed the rule, we all had to go through a transition phase. For me during the transition, I had to take a couple of things. One is called Clomiphene……and another is called HCG (Human Chorionic Gonadotropin)… I tested positive for these things which I should have because I took them and they were in my system. That wasn’t a surprise. These aren’t anabolics, these aren’t steroids or performance enhancers, but they (the commission) have deemed that they are banned substances.”
Important to note is that Chael Sonnen, while he had been scheduled to fight in UFC 175 in July, he had taken himself “out of competition” due to the rule change and his need to undergo the alternative therapy.
Even so, however, Sonnen explained to Mohr, the commission does conduct “out-of-competition testing.” Also, according to Sonnen, while the tests conducted in his camp showed “everything was out of (his) system”, the commission tests were apparently more sensitive. Regardless, said Sonnen:
“These weren’t secrets that I took these substances, this is what you have to take coming off testosterone. They can handle it however they want… The confusing part is that for a non-anabolic, non-steroid, non-performance enhancing agent that is perfectly legal and that I need for a healthy life……essentially, they are saying you have to choose between health and sport… I was very upfront about it being in my system. Why was it in my system? Because I took it… I had to take it because you guys (NSAC) changed the rules!”
And how did UFC President Dana White feel about this Chael Sonnen situation? According to MMA Junkie:
“Chael Sonnen’s at this point in his life and his career where he got married, he was trying to have children, and he’s on medicine to get fertile, and his wife is now pregnant,” said White. “So it worked. This is between Chael and the commission, but the rules should have been laid out better when they said, ‘That’s it. (TRT) is over.’”
Chael Sonnen, in the mean time, plans to appeal the failed test, but his optimism seems to about match his testosterone levels:
“I now have to go to a hearing and I have a fight in thirty-days. There’s no way the hearing will be before then. It’s just kind of a tough spot.”
Chael Sonnen had been scheduled to fight Vitor Belfort on July 5 in UFC 175. But on the bright side, he lives to fight another day, and congratulations on the future family of little Sonnens!