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Tag: drug addiction

MMA’s Catch-22 Drug Trap: Why So Many Fighters Fall Into Addiction


(MMA competition can provide the stability necessary for a person to beat addiction. It can also create the physical and emotional chaos that leads to drugs in the first place.)

By Santino DeFranco

For months I’ve wanted to get started on an article discussing drug use among MMA athletes, but just haven’t gotten my fingers to the keyboard. For some reason, after seeing Dennis Siver’s positive test for HCG recently — probably the least worrisome drug I’ve ever seen someone test positive for — I’ve decided to get going with it.

In addition to the positive tests for performance enhancing substances that we’ve seen dozens of times in this sport, there has been an alarming number of positive drug tests for recreational and prescription drugs as well. We’ve also seen countless fighters wage personal battles with substance abuse outside of the ring/cage, with several ending in death — accidental as well as suicide. It’s the recreational drugs and prescription painkillers that have caught my attention as something that may need to be addressed.

After seeing so many fighters struggle with drug abuse over the years like Joe Riggs, Drew Fickett, Karo Parisyan, along with those that have passed away from drug-related circumstances like Shane Del Rosario and Shelby Walker, I started to wonder: Is MMA leading athletes to become addicted to drugs, or are people who are more prone to drug use entering the world of mixed martial arts?

What I found out is that the answer to both previous questions is yes. Those more prone to use drugs do enter MMA, and MMA in return, leads those to use drugs and subsequently become addicted to them. It’s a hell of a lot more complex than that, but simply put, MMA fighters, as well as boxers, are kind of screwed.

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‘UFC on FX 3′ Video Hype: Ian McCall Has Been Through Some Harsh Times


(Props: fueltv)

…and I’m not talking about that lame-ass Christian Bale movie. Ian McCall‘s greatest victory has come against a drug addiction that previously resulted in arrests, motorcycle accidents, and a near-death experience during a fateful tattooing session. Now, he has more to fight for than a UFC flyweight title shot. “I’ve now become a husband and a father,” he says. “That stuff has just added to the fire where now I can’t screw up.” And so, we have one more reason to be sort-of interested in tonight’s UFC on FX 3 card. Any of y’all plan on watching?

After the jump: Ariel Helwani interviews McCall and Demetrious Johnson following yesterday’s weigh-ins. To be honest, the most interesting part of the video is Ariel’s jacket. Lookin’ slick, my dude.

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Five MMA Fighters Who Beat Addiction

Addiction can make the toughest S.O.B. as powerless as this guy. While many MMA fighters have had their lives and careers derailed by drugs and alcohol, some were strong enough to find treatment and pull their lives out of the tailspin. Here’s our tribute to five of them…

LYLE BEERBOHM
Lyle Beerbohm mugshot meth drugs arrest addict
Drug of choice: methamphetamines
Rock bottom moment: Wandering around the streets looking for a place to sleep after he had burned his bridges with everybody in his life. When he landed in the Washington State Penitentiary for 18 months for drug-related felonies after six years of shooting meth, nobody in his family came to visit him.
Recovery: While in the joint, Beerbohm began watching The Ultimate Fighter and became inspired to fight for a living; he’d already had to physically defend himself in prison a few times. "Fancy Pants" joined an MMA gym the day he got out, and won his first amateur fight eight days later. Beerbohm is currently 16-0 as a pro, and will take on Pat Healy in the main event of Strikeforce Challengers 14 next month.

COURT McGEE
Court McGee the Ultimate Fighter 11 trophy winner
Drug of choice: Alcohol, cocaine, heroin, meth, etc.
Rock bottom moment: McGee began abusing drugs after falling in with the wrong crowd after high school, and was once pronounced dead following a heroin overdose. In 2006, McGee had managed to stay sober for five months. In order to test his willpower, he took a trip to Las Vegas and decided to order just one drink. He woke up four days later in Iowa, not wearing any pants.
Recovery: McGee has been sober since April 16, 2006, two weeks after the Vegas/Iowa incident. He began training in MMA and rebuilding relationships with his family, which helped restore order to his life. "Crusher" came out of nowhere to win TUF 11 last June, and submitted Ryan Jensen in his follow-up fight at UFC 121

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