Steroids in MMA
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Tag: testosterone

Robert Drysdale Denied License for UFC 167 Due to Absurdly Inflated T/E Ratio [UPDATED]


(Allegedly, Robert shaved his chest three hours before this photo was taken. / Photo via Getty)

For the second time since his ill-fated signing with the UFC, BJJ world champion Robert Drysdale has been forced to withdraw from a scheduled fight. In July, Drysdale pulled out of a UFC 163 match against Ednaldo Oliveira due to a “staph infection” — yes there are scare quotes around “staph infection,” we’ll get to that later — and now the undefeated light-heavyweight been denied licensure by the NSAC for his UFC 167 match against Cody Donovan, after an out-of-competition drug test came back with a 19.4:1 testosterone-to-epitestosterone (T/E) ratio.

That’s more than three times the NSAC’s testing threshold of 6:1 (which is considered overly liberal in the first place), and even beats the super-inflated T/E ratios that Alistair Overeem (14:1) and Chael Sonnen (16.9:1) previously turned in. If you’re a healthy adult male, your T/E ratio is probably around 1:1. In other words, Robert Drysdale is approximately 20 times the man you are.

Drysdale’s latest drug test didn’t come back positive for steroids, and NSAC boss Keith Kizer clarified that the submission ace hasn’t been suspended or fined as a result of the failed test — at least not by the athletic commission. As we’ve seen recently, the UFC has no problem taking matters into its own hands when it comes to testosterone abusers. So will the UFC will give Drysdale another chance to get his act together, or will he become the first none-and-done fighter since Benjamin Brinsa?

Right, so about that “staph infection”…

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Today in TRT News: Rothwell Jumps on the Testosterone Train, Brazilian Commission Loses Its Only Accredited Testing Facility


(Doughy, smooth IFL Ben and lean, hairy UFC Ben. Man, that acai berry stuff really works wonders.)

Ben Rothwell has requested and received a Therapeutic Use Exemption for TRT at his upcoming UFC 164 bout in Milwaukee. So has former heavyweight champ Frank Mir, but he’s no stranger to the TRT TUE game.

MMA Junkie obtained the information from the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services recently. According to Junkie, both fighters were not available for comment but Rothwell’s opponent Brandon Vera was.

“The Truth” was not amused. “It won’t help,” he said of Rothwell’s TRT use.

In a related story, legendary fighters and noted TRT users Vitor Belfort and Dan Henderson will indeed fight as we gave you a heads up about the other day; the match will be held at 205 pounds and it appears that neither fighter will face many obstacles in using TRT to their hearts’ content. Belfort has tested positive for a banned substance before, prompting the chief executive of the world’s most important athletic commission, the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s Keith Kizer, to opine that he didn’t think Vitor would ever be likely to receive a TUE for TRT in the state.

As states like Nevada and New Jersey go, so usually do the rest of the United States. Belfort has fought three out of his last four fights in Brazil with the other taking place in Canada. But hey, Brazil has a regulatory commission, right? They surely do: The Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA).

The doctor who serves as medical director for that commission, Marcio Tannure, recently told MMAFighting.com that “Henderson needs to send him the exams to prove his medical conditions (hypogonadism) to apply for a TRT use, and they will analyze the request,” and that Belfort has blood tested before and after fights to ensure that “his levels are good.” Usually, fighters with TUEs for TRT still have to maintain “normal” testosterone levels.

In the Southern hemisphere, the national Brazilian star Belfort is the one in good standing, his prior failed drug test not being a deterrent to CABMMA in granting him a TUE whereas Henderson, who is allowed his TUE in the states, is the one who appears to face more of a hurdle. Coincidence, I’m sure.

However, don’t expect either Belfort or Henderson to be denied TUEs for TRT because, well, CABMMA’s drug testing isn’t considered to be quite as legitimate by international standards any more. BloodyElbow has the info:

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The War on Drugs: California Ruling Strikes Down TRT Exemptions for MMA Fighters Until Further Notice


(Image via Fightland/RyanLoco)

A decision made during a California State Athletic Commission meeting in Los Angeles on Monday could have a major impact on the ongoing testosterone replacement therapy debate in MMA. Among the topics covered during the eight-hour session was a new proposed rule that would standardize the process for obtaining therapeutic use exemptions for testosterone. But the rule was successfully challenged by Department of Consumer Affairs lawyer Michael Santiago. As FightOpinion reports:

“[Santiago] said that until there is a statute/regulation on the books regarding testosterone that the commission should not be using an ‘underground’ policy of approving T usage. He argued that testosterone is considered a banned substance.

The end result is that fighters like Dan Henderson, Chael Sonnen, and Frank Mir will not be allowed to use testosterone while fighting in California until a law is on the books that explicitly spells out approval for T usage…[T]he UFC will be furious about this development given how many guys they have fighting in California who love testosterone. Vitor Belfort’s sympathy plea for continued testosterone usage means he won’t be fighting in California any time soon…

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Brian Bowles Fails UFC 160 Drug Test


(Bowles in happier times)

In case you missed it, nation, not all UFC 160 fighters passed their post-fight drug tests. Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) Executive Director Keith Kizer let us know yesterday that former champion Brian Bowles has some ‘splaining to do.

Regarding UFC 160, Kizer wrote in an email that “All athletes tested.  All results negative, except Brian Bowles tested positive for an elevated T/E ratio (> 20).  A complaint will be forthcoming.”

First off, let’s just highlight the fact that Kizer said that all fighters on the UFC 160 card were tested. Used to be that only a select few were ever tested following bouts, you might remember. For some time now, however, the NSAC has been testing all fighters on a given card. Ain’t no Canadian loopholes in Nevada, we suppose.

Back to Bowles – The failed test is just an extra bummer for him. He returned to action for the first time since 2011 at UFC 160 and lost via TKO to George Roop. No one seems to really be able to truly explain the precise significance of what elevated testosterone to epitestosterone ratios mean, but we do know that athletes can sure get in trouble for having them.

A complaint from the NSAC will soon be filed against Bowles and his license to fight is presumably temporarily suspended until he has a hearing before the regulatory body to explain himself and the test results. At that point, the commission could decide to do any number of things with Bowles from reinstating his license immediately to suspending him for a specific period of time and fining him a portion of his UFC 160 purse.

Bowles has now lost two in a row. Thus far, he hasn’t appeared to comment publicly on the test results.  We’ll keep you posted as more news develops.

- Elias Cepeda

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Lavar Johnson’s Post-UFC 157 Drug Test Comes Back Positive for Elevated Testosterone


(Image via Esther Lin/MMAFighting.com)

UFC heavyweight Lavar Johnson — who directly inspired our “Will You Be Fired…” flowchart by not getting fired following his UFC 157 loss to Brendan Schaub — caught a bit of bad news yesterday. The California State Athletic Commission revealed (via MMAJunkie) that Johnson’s post-fight drug test at the February 23rd event was flagged for elevated levels of testosterone. A follow-up carbon isotope ratio test “confirmed the testosterone was consistent with the administration of a steroid.”

No word yet on what that steroid was specifically or how high his T-levels were, but damn Lavar, you in troubllllllle. A suspension and fine are likely imminent, and the failed test could eliminate the good-will that Johnson has built up with his employers by always coming to bang.

It’s also noteworthy that Johnson’s drug test involved a carbon isotope ratio test, which “examines the atomic make-up of testosterone in the urine to determine if it is natural or synthetic.” The UFC has drawn some criticism in the past for not using this effective method of catching cheaters. Is the promotion about to get tougher in its anti-doping efforts? And could this be related to Dana White’s recent vow to “test the [expletive]” out of TRT abusers? We’ll update you when we know more…

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Is This Real Life?: Alistair Overeem’s ‘UFC 156′ Drug Test Comes Back With *Below* Average Testosterone Levels


(You think Antonio Silva‘s training methods are too tough, Alistair? Just wait until Jillian Michaels gets ahold of you. Photo via Getty Images.) 

Well, this would be a hell of a lot more triumphant news had Alistair Overeem not been tenderized like a cheap cut of (horse) steak at UFC 156, but you’ll be happy to know that Overeem, along with all of the 22 fighters who competed on the card, passed their post-fight drug tests with flying colors. Here’s where things get weird; Overeem’s test did come back with abnormal results, just not the kind you’d expect. And no, it wasn’t for Mary Jane. MMAJunkie passed along the results:

But with his blood test form his UFC 156 fight, his testosterone total level actually fell below the normal range of 250-1,100 nano grams per deciliter (ng/dL). Overeem’s total testosterone came in at 179 from the test, which was administered the morning after the fight at 8:25 a.m. on Feb. 3.

All other levels within the blood test came back within the normal reference range. 

Wait, Overeem’s testosterone level was below normal?! I think this occasion calls for a very special head-splosion clip:

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Dana White Says He’s ‘Absolutely 100 Percent Against TRT’, Vows to Test the [Expletive] Out of Abusers


(Photo via MMAOpinion)

Ever since it began making headlines thanks to Chael Sonnen and Nate Marquardt, testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) has been one of the most controversial topics in MMA. To some, it’s medically-sanctioned cheating — a legal loophole that allows giant killing machines to have even more firepower in their quest to injure their opponents. To others, it’s…uh…well, it’s a freedom country, so why even discuss it?

But although UFC president Dana White has flip-flopped on TRT in the past, he’s finally made up his mind, and fortunately, he’s coming down on the right side of the issue. While in London for UFC on FUEL 7, White came out strongly against the practice, blasting fighters who abuse hormone therapy to jack up their testosterone levels during training. Here’s what he had to say following the Barao vs. McDonald weigh-ins:

TRT has become a way for people to cheat. If this is what your normal level should be and then you have guys training at huge levels (of testosterone) for their whole camp then tapering down to get to normal levels before the fucking fight, that’s cheating, and I don’t like it anymore.”

There are plenty of guys in the UFC that are naturally gifted and talented fighters. If you’re testosterone levels are too low then you’re probably too old to be fighting, stop fighting!

We can test everybody. I’m telling you right now, if you are using testosterone replacement therapy, get ready motherfuckers because we’re going to test the shit out of you.”

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Rousimar Palhares, Joey Beltran Fail Drug Tests Following ‘UFC on FX 6′ Appearances [UPDATED]


(You know what, bro, put down that birthday cake. You don’t deserve it anymore.)

MMA’s drug-failure tally has gotten off to a fast start in 2013, with two notable fighters already netted by the UFC’s independent testing. Here’s the promotion’s official statement via UFC.com:

Rousimar Palhares tested positive for elevated testosterone and Joey Beltran tested positive for nandrolone, following their respective bouts at UFC on FX 6 in Australia. The UFC organization has a strict, consistent policy against the use of any illegal and/or performance-enhancing drugs, stimulants or masking agents. Both athletes have agreed to serve a nine-month suspension retroactive to December 14. They must pass a drug test upon completion of the suspension before receiving clearance to compete again.

Palhares was knocked out by Hector Lombard on the “Sotiropoulos vs. Pearson” main card, marking Toquinho’s second-straight KO loss. Between his losing skid and the fact that this isn’t even his first suspension while under contract with the UFC, Palhares is on very thin ice. As for Beltran, the light-heavyweight slugger defeated Igor Pokrajac by decision during the UFC on FX 6 prelims. That win will likely be changed to a no-contest.

Update: Joey Beltran denies taking any illegal substances, and is laying the groundwork for a tainted supplements defense. His statement (via twitter) is after the jump…

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Alistair Overeem Releases Statement on UFC 146 Withdrawal; Blames Anti-Inflammatory Medication for Elevated Testosterone Levels


(Photo courtesy of Heavy.com)

Alistair Overeem has finally broken his silence on his failed drug screening earlier this month. Here’s what the UFC heavyweight contender had to say in a release distributed this morning by Authentic Sports Management:

“To my friends and fans,

I am deeply saddened to announce that on Friday, April 20, I respectfully withdrew from the May 26 event so that I can request a continuance until my situation with the Nevada State Athletic Commission is resolved.

I cannot express how sorry I am to the Commission, Junior Dos Santos, the fans, the owners and employees of the UFC, my friends and family and anyone else who this has affected.

I absolutely do not believe in, nor do I use performance-enhancing drugs. I am a clean fighter and I will do whatever it takes to prove this to everyone.

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Brock Lesnar vs. Alistair Overeem: Where Are They Now?

By Jason Moles

After the most difficult two-and-a half minutes of his professional MMA career, it was all over for Brock Lesnar. Not just the savage abuse he was taking from Strikeforce/K-1 champion Alistair Overeem, not just his attempted comeback in the sport he took by storm, but his time in MMA altogether. ”I’ve had a really difficult couple of years with my disease, and I’m going to officially say tonight was the last time you’ll see me in the Octagon,” Lesnar said during his post-fight retirement speech at UFC 141.

It’s only fitting that Lesnar’s run in the UFC end as quickly and unexpectedly as it began. The former NCAA Division I wrestling champion was never really ours when you think about it — MMA merely borrowed Lesnar, and we should consider ourselves fortunate that he briefly lent his personality and ferocious physicality to our sport. As he said his final good-byes to the Las Vegas crowd, the beardless viking looked relieved to see the Octagon in his rear-view mirror.

Shortly after waiving off the fight, Mario Yamasaki raised the arm of the new #1 contender, Alistair Overeem. The former PRIDE fighter had everything going for him. He dodged a fatal bullet from the NSAC, was making bank in the UFC, and had just defeated a man most people considered a Top 5 contender in the heavyweight division – finally proving to the world that he can indeed hang with the best. On top of all that, he had just been announced as the next challenger for Junior Dos Santos’ championship title. The only way it could have been better is if the mayor had given him a key to the city and held a parade in his honor. If Overeem only knew the fate that would befall him over the course of the next three months, his smile might not have been as big that December night inside the MGM Grand.

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