Hector Lombard, Nick Diaz, Anderson Silva, Jon Jones…you hardly need to hear the list of names again. Announced on Wednesday’s UFC Tonight, UFC Chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta and president Dana White will address the recent string of high-profile drug test failures at a press conference on Wednesday, February 18th.
The press conference will come one day after the NSAC’s disciplinary hearing of Anderson Silva, Nick Diaz and Hector Lombard. Fines, suspensions and overturned results are all on the table for disciplinary action in the commission’s hearing. Much of what the UFC brass has to say should be heavily dependent on the findings of the hearing taking place the day before.
“UFC Tonight” Hosts Daniel Cormier and Michael Bisping gave the following statements on the recent busts in the promotion and what it means for MMA,
“When you look at social media, fans are saying this is bad for the UFC,” Cormier said. “I say it’s good. It’s working. Keep it up. It’s exposing these guys who are taking short cuts. Keep testing these guys. Tell them they can’t keep cheating. It’s not a bad thing. It’s a good thing. Do more [testing]. It doesn’t matter who you are, if you are doing things wrong, it will show it.”
“For people who don’t know too much about the sport and see legends like Anderson Silva get caught, it looks bad and leaves a bad tasted in people’s mouths,” offered Bisping. “I’d like to see every main event and co-main event get tested, plus two or three guys on the card randomly tested, plus random testing before fights. There has to be year-round random testing and harsher penalties.”
Whether the UFC decides to go back to implementing its own drug testing, provides commissions with funds, or relies a new neutral third party for testing, constant tests seems to be the first step for a solution to the problem. However, UFC Heavyweight Brendan Schaub has commented on the issue and illustrated the second pivotal step to solving the PED problem.
“Listen, I would love to hear an argument for why I shouldn’t do steroids,” Schaub said. “Give me one. Let’s say I take steroids and test positive. Say I’m a young kid [getting to the UFC] and I ask my dad, ‘Dad, why shouldn’t I take steroids?’ Can I say, ‘Well, you’ll never be world champ.’ That’s not true.world champ. ‘Well, you’ll never fight for a title.’ That’s not true.”
“tested positive, fought for a title. ‘Well, you’ll never be ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ coach.’ Nope, Chael Sonnen, Anderson Silva. ‘Well, you’ll never be a main event.’ No, not true. a main event. Bigfoot Silva’s a main event. ‘Well, listen, you might get fired.’ No, not really. Guys pop all the time. If it’s cheating, everyone else is doing it and they’re getting rewarded for it.”
Most importantly, Schaub shed light on the disciplinary problems for fighters if they are caught with a positive test,
“You know what’s infuriating to me? It’s not that I’m not champ,” said Schaub. “It’s not that I’ve lost some fights or won some big fights. It’s more that there’s just no reason everyone shouldn’t take steroids. There’s just not. In the UFC there’s no reason. Someone give me a legit reason why you would tell a young fighter not to take them. I would love to hear a good argument. ‘Well, you’ll get fined $3000 and you’ll have to sit out six months, maybe nine.’ I fight every six months anyway.”
What do you think the NSAC’s disciplinary actions will be? What other solutions to the PED problem are there?