Performance-enhancing drug use is always a hot topic in the sports world. Whenever sports fans see an athlete dominate his or her sport, there’s always people questioning just how they ascended to such great heights. Take Alex Rodriguez as an example — he’s off to a great start, and due to that great start, there have been some people who are accusing him of PED use. Granted, Rodriguez is coming off a lengthy suspension due to PED use, however, no matter how clean or dirty your record is, if you put up great numbers, there will always be questions.
Whether you love or hate A-Rod, the fact is that his PED use didn’t hurt anyone else. He’s just hitting a baseball. Which is the point UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey made during her appearance on Sirius XM’s Opie with Jim Norton. Rousey said that PED use is so much more serious in MMA than in any other sport, because in baseball, you’re just throwing and hitting a ball. But in MMA, it’s possible that a fighter taking performance-enhancing drugs could end up killing his opponent, and that a fighter on steroids is basically bringing a weapon into the cage with them.
“In MMA it’s just so much more serious than in any other sport. In baseball, you take a bunch of drugs and you can hit a ball farther, but in MMA, if you take a bunch of drugs you could hit a person harder. The only reason why we’re able to do the sport safely is because there is a limit to the human potential. You’re literally taking a weapon inside that cage when you take a drug.
What I really worry about is, in boxing, several people die a year in boxing. No one’s died doing MMA. It’s a lot safer. But, if more and more performance-enhancing drugs keep coming in, and somebody dies in the sport, and somebody tests positive for a drug… I mean, you’ve just killed someone with a weapon. That’s homicide.”
Rousey’s point is valid, as there haven’t been any deaths in MMA inside the cage. However, there have been fighters that have died trying to make weight. However, that has happened in nearly every combat sport where the fighters are cutting weight.
Lately, the UFC has cracked down on fighters taking performance-enhancing drugs, and so have the state athletic commissions. One of the most criticized rules in MMA was the allowance of testosterone replacement therapy, which many people felt extended a fighter’s career, and was giving fighters a chance to legally take PEDs if they qualified for TRT. Last year, the UFC and the athletic commissions banned TRT, which was immediately followed by the decline and retirement of several fighters who were forced to come off of TRT.
As previously stated, in this day and age, athletic superiority often goes hand and hand with the general public accusing the superior athlete of PED use, and Ronda Rousey is no exception to that rule. But, if you combine the fact that she’s so adamantly against PED use in MMA with the fact that she’s never failed a drug test, it’s pretty safe to say that Rousey has reached the top of the mountain the right way.
[Image via Harry How / Getty Images]