Two-year suspension for Fabricio Werdum over steroid use
The UFC's Anti-Doping Program administrators, USADA, made a shocking announcement regarding former UFC heavyweight champion, Fabricio Werdum. On April 25th, just under two months after his last UFC appearance, Werdum tested positive for an anabolic steroid, Trenbolone, and it's metabolite, Epitrenbolone, in an out-of-competition urine screening. Trenbolone is banned at all times of the competition by the UFC since it is an anabolic agent.
WHAT IS TRENBOLONE?
Trenbolone is a steroid that is used in veterinary medicine, primarily to increase the profitability of livestock, by promoting muscle growth. Werdum has called this unfortunate incident, a misunderstanding, and is working with both USADA and the UFC to find the source of the substance. He is set to be eligible for a return, not earlier than April 22nd, 2020, until which his career will be put on hold by the UFC.
Before his loss against heavyweight Alexander Volkov, Werdum showed signs of promise in making his way to yet another shot at the title. He had two consecutive wins over Walt Harris and Marcin Tybura before his defeat against Volkov ended a two-fight win streak in the UFC.
Werdum has also found himself in the news for other unpleasant reasons. He had turned down two fights previously, against heavyweight giants, Junior Dos Santos, and Alistair Overeem, over some financial issues. Werdum also was suspended as a Spanish-language commentator after he had a few words to say about the official apparel sponsor of the UFC, Reebok. This is what he had to say about the controversy:
"I was protesting," Werdum said. "Actually, I'm not forced to use Reebok. I don't have a contract with them. For people that don't know, Reebok sponsors, well, sponsors, only during the fight and in the fight week you have to wear it [Reebok gear], it's in the contract. In reality, I don't have a deal with them to post outside the UFC. I can post whatever I want, if I want to post Kings MMA, I'll post. If I want to post Nike or any other company or the sponsors I have, anything, so I'm not obligated. For people saying I'd get in trouble, there will be no trouble. It was just a protest, something that before we could show any sponsor we wanted. We used to get real good money, it was a lot different from Reebok. Today, with Reebok there is a pay scale, if you have a certain number of fights you get $5.000, $8.000. Of course it's good money, but nothing like it was before, so of course it was a protest."
Post the news of his suspension, heavyweight Mark Hunt was immediately identified as the opponent who was supposed to be Werdum's counterpart for UFC London's main event, Aleksei Oleinik. With that being said, Werdum will be looking to make a strong comeback of sorts. He does hold a formidable record by beating big names in the sport such as Fedor Emelianenko, Cain Velasquez, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, Travis Browne, Mark Hunt, and Roy Nelson.
The UFC will be hoping for his return as well as he never fails to be an entertainer and a big pay-per-view draw for the organization.