It was only a few weeks ago that veteran MMA writer Josh Gross unveiled a detailed piece on Deadspin, detailing haymaker accusations against the UFC for allegedly covering up one Vitor Belfort’s pre-fight drug test leading up to UFC 152.
The test, as Gross wrote, showed elevated levels of testosterone for Belfort, something the UFC claimed it would be monitoring closely given “The Phenom’s” history with performance-enhancing drugs. Not only that, but the results were reportedly revealed to several unintended recipients via email, only to finally see the light of day three years later.
The weeks that followed were relatively uncharacteristic for the UFC. Despite facing heavy allegations, the promotion stayed quiet, almost refusing to acknowledge what accusations were being thrown at them.
That silence was broken in the moments following UFC 192.
“I think one of the things to keep in mind with this particular topic is, any suggestion or inference that there was a coverup in regards to that was categorically false,” UFC Director of PR Dave Sholler said during the UFC 192 post-fight presser.
Sholler went on to describe the TRT era as one of the most complicated the sport’s ever endured. Several fighters were receiving exemptions to undergo the controversial treatment, and neither the UFC nor any athletic commissions could do much to stop it. The Nevada State Athletic Commission outlawed TRT in 2014, and the UFC would follow in its footsteps shortly after.
“As we look at it today, we have signed on with one of the greatest and most stringent anti-doping policies in the world in USADA,” Sholler said. “So our position on doping is the same. There’s no place for it in the sport and we’re going to work with Jeff Novitzky and the USADA folk to continue to make sure that performance enhancing drugs have no place in the UFC.”