UFC 146: Overeem is kicked out and Mir steps in against Dos Santos

Some may argue that PEDs are just a way of life in professional sports. But are they?
Photo: MGM Grand Garden Arena, site of UFC 146

ROCKVILLE, Md., April 23, 2012 —UFC 145 was a great evening for a number of different reasons. Having two stars, who stood at the top of the light-heavyweight division, legitimately dislike each other did wonders for drawing the attention of fans. So much attention, in fact, that UFC brass was able to sweep losing title contender Alistair Overeem to a failed drug test under the rug.  Alistair Overeem was originally scheduled to challenge heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos at UFC 146 less than five weeks away, on May 26 in the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

It should be noted that, Overeem was not caught using Performance Enhancing Drugs (or PEDs) of any kind per se. What disqualified Overeem from fighting this May was his elevated testosterone levels which is normally indicative of PED use. Overeem’s test results showed that at the time of being tested, the contender had a testosterone ratio of 14:1:0. The normal limit is 1:1:0. Instead of waiting for Overeem’s explanation, the UFC went ahead with removing him from the card, replacing him with former UFC champion Frank Mir.

Frank Mir ready to go.

This is far from the first time that a major UFC star has been punished for suspected or proven drug use. In fact, there have been several recent cases of UFC fighters getting punished for illegal drug use. Just last year, welterweight standout, Nate Marquart was removed from the UFC the very week of his main event fight against Rick Story thanks to an elevated testosterone level. Nick Diaz, once considered the number one contender for the welterweight crown, also recently failed a drug test after his fight with Carlos Condit. Chris Leben, perennial middleweight contender is currently serving a one-year suspension for failing his last drug test.

Some may argue that PEDs are just a way of life in professional sports. “Everyone is doing it. So why punish them for it?” is what many fight fans believe. If it is true, that every professional athlete is using drugs, then why aren’t we hearing about NFL and NBA superstars failing drug tests? What would the fallout be if Kobe Bryant or Tony Romo were caught doing anything that indicated the use of illegal drugs?

Fortunately for the UFC, mixed martial arts is far from being as mainstream as basketball and football. However, mixed martial arts is quickly rising in popularity. Before it gets to the upper echelon of mainstream sports, the UFC needs to figure a way to guide its fighters away from practices that could make the sport look bad.

Jason has over 10 years of mixed martial arts experience. Currently, he runs his own MMA gym where he also trains (www.evolveacademy.com) . 

Jason works as a personal trainer and conditioning coach for professional fighters (www.soldierfit.com). You can follow him on Twitter or Facebook at Jmommablackhat. 


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Jason Morris

Jason Morris has spent most of his life involved in the Mixed Marital Arts community in some capacity. In the early 90s,  Jason became interested in the sport after watching the Ultimate Fighting Championships. In 2003, his interests led him to begin his training in Mixed Martial Arts. Today, Jason works a full-time in the sport while fulfilling a number of different roles. He is a director and head trainer at Evolve Academy of Mixed Martial Arts where he teaches Mixed Martial Arts for sport and self-defense. He fights professionally and coaches both amateur and professional fighters. On occasion, he even works as a fight promoter for local events in the DMV.

 

 

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