Anderson Silva is staring down the barrel of a career ending suspension following failing an USADA drugs test on 26th October 2017.
Combate broke the news earlier this week that former UFC middleweight champion Silva had tested positive for two separate banned substances. MMA Fighting later confirmed that the synthetic anabolic steroid, methyltestosterone and a diuretic were found in the sample taken prior to Silva’s scheduled bout with Kelvin Gastelum last year.
The UFC anti-doping policy considers methyltestosterone to be an anabolic agent and athletes found to be taking it face a suspension of up to 2 years. Unfortunately for Silva, this isn’t his first brush with anabolic steroids and it isn’t the first time he has been suspended. Back in 2015 he tested positive for anabolic steroids in multiple tests around his UFC 183 match up with Nick Diaz. Ultimately the former champion was suspended for a year after he and his team claimed the banned substances originated from a sexual enhancement pill he had taken.
Should USADA take these failures in to account, Silva would be considered a repeat offender could be looking at a suspension of up to 4 years. According to the Combate report, Silva and his team are pushing hard for USADA to disregard the previous incident on the grounds that it did not fall under the UFC anti-doping policy which was introduced later that year. If a 4 year suspension isn’t serious enough, should USADA consider there to be “aggravating circumstances”, the Brazillian could be looking at a suspension of up to 8 years.
The Combate report claims that should 42-year-old Silva be handed a suspension of 2 years or more, he would announce his retirement from the sport. Silva recently proclaimed his innocence, claiming never to have taken performance enhancing drugs at any stage of his career.
Whatever the outcome, Silva‘s once great legacy is in tatters. It is hard to see a way for the once dominant champion to recover his reputation after this latest development and it is looking increasingly likely that we have seen him in the octagon for the last time.