The Nevada State Athletic Commission held two hearings Wednesday, the first regarding Chael Sonnen’s recent pair of failed drug tests.
The commission unanimously voted to suspend the former Middleweight/Light Heavyweight contender for 2 years after he failed 2 separate drug tests this year. Sonnen recently retired from the UFC, but if he ever decided to come out of retirement, he will not be able to compete until 2016. Sonnen is also being forced to assist in an advisory role with the commission as part of his punishment.
When asked about the decision, all Sonnen had to say was, “I don’t want to say anything that would come off as an excuse. I am Guilty. I am ashamed. I don’t have any attempt to put up any defense.”
Sonnen will go down as not only the man who almost beat Anderson Silva at UFC 117, but also as one of the most controversial fighters to ever step foot in the octagon.
Our second hearing on Wednesday with the Nevada State Athletic Commission saw Vitor Belfort receive his fighters license.
His license comes with these stipulations:
- He is not to appear in a professional fight prior to December.
- The fight must take place in Nevada.
- He is subject to NSAC’s enhanced drug testing program at all times.
Commissioner Anthony Marnell made it very clear to Belfort that they intend to test him for the reamainder of his career: “We’re going to drug test you until the day you retire. That’s my definition of reasonable. Not every day, week, or month, but we, in my opinion, need to be in and around your career until the day you call it quits.”
Belfort has always been at the forefront of drug testing in the UFC after he tested positive for anabolic steroids back in 2006. He began using TRT (Testosterone Replacement Therapy) in 2011, but has said he stopped using it in February. “I’m taking a prescription every day called Holy Spirit.” Belfort said when asked how he is coping without TRT, “It’s called work ethic. I cannot teach you that. You have it or not.”
After receiving his license, the UFC quickly booked their UFC 181 Main Event on December 6th, where Vitor Belfor will take on Middleweight Champion Chris Weidman in Las Vegas, Nevada.
It broke Wednesday afternoon that Alexander Gustafsson had suffered an injury in training, and will be out of his UFC 178 rematch against Jon Jones.
Who is taking his place? Daniel Cormier.
This is bittersweet news. On one hand, Gustafsson is out, and we might not get the rematch we have all been hoping for. Last year at UFC 165, Gustafsson gave Champion Jon Jones the toughest test of his career. Many people, including myself, actually thought The Mauler won the fight, so when it was announced that he would be getting his rematch at UFC 178, we were oozing with excitement.
On the other hand though, we get the match that people have been wanting to see since DC made his first appearance inside the octagon.
Cormier could quite possibly be the best fighter in the UFC right now. He has an unblemished 15-0 record in his MMA career, and after his beat down of Dan Henderson at UFC 173, many believe he can be the one to knock off the reigning pound-for-pound champ Jon Jones.
Luckily the replacement of Cormier does not hurt the 178 card in even the slightest. If anything, it might even just enhance it’s overall awesomeness. We’re already getting the return of Dominic Cruz and Cat Zingano, as well as a huge featherweight bout between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor.
UFC 178 will be a must see event.
h/t: Bleacher Report, ESPN, FOX Sports