Earlier this month, news broke that Anderson Silva — who was returning to the octagon after missing over a year due to a broken leg — tested positive for two different types of anabolic steroids. Silva testing positive for steroids came as a bit of a surprise to the MMA world, as Silva has always been very outspoken against performance-enhancing drugs.
About a week after it was announced that Anderson Silva had tested positive for steroids, the Nevada Athletic Commission announced that UFC welterweight Hector Lombard tested positive for desoxymethyltestosterone, which is an anabolic steroid.
The UFC and the NAC has been doing more stringent drug testing as of late, and UFC color commentator Joe Rogan believes that Silva and Lombard testing positive for anabolic steroids is a sign that there is a steroid epidemic in the UFC, and in the sport of MMA.
“The UFC and MMA in general is a steroid epidemic. They’ve started this really stringent testing and everybody is getting popped. They’re just getting popped left and right. It’s one of the things fighters have been saying for a long time, that everyone is on steroids, a huge percentage. Give a number 50, 60 percent. Whatever the f**k it is that are on steroids.”
There are many people who believe that Silva wasn’t a regular steroid user throughout his dominant career in the UFC, and that he was just using them to make sure he properly recovered from the gruesome broken leg he suffered near the end of 2013. Rogan also believes that is the case with Silva, and that people shouldn’t question his entire career because of one failed test.
“Anderson was coming back from a broken leg and he tested positive for metabolites. It was leaving his system, a very trace amount. If that was the case, it could very well be that he got on some steroids to heal up quicker. Because what steroids do, is they allow you to recover quicker.
“So if he’s 39 years old and he broke his f***ing leg, you’re talking about a long-a** period of recovery. Or you take steroids and you recover in nine months instead of 15 months or fill in the blank. That could be what’s going on, but the reality is it’s illegal. You can’t do it. If it takes you 15 months, the excuse can’t be, ‘I’m going to give you some illegal drugs so you heal quicker. This is the only reason you take these drugs. Don’t worry about it, you’ll be fine.’ No, you’re never allowed to take steroids.”
Former UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre — who has been very outspoken against steroid use — believes that the recent failed steroid tests are only “the tip of the iceberg.” GSP was interviewed by MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani, and told Helwani that he’s not surprised that so many fighters are getting busted for PED use.
“I was not surprised that a lot of guys got busted, I’m not surprised. It’s going to be other names coming up. That what’s you guys don’t understand. If they keep doing the right testing, it’s going to be other guys coming up. I’m not a rat. I don’t want to say any names, but I want to change the system. And what it shows is now we’ve got a big problem, and they need to do something with it.”
Part of the reason St. Pierre retired from the UFC as the welterweight champion is because he believed that the UFC and the athletic commissions weren’t doing enough to clean up the sport, and he plans to stay retired until he feels that both the UFC and the state athletic commissions do more to ensure that there’s absolutely no PED use in MMA.
[Image via USA Today]