UFC 220 Free Fight: Stipe Miocic vs. Junior dos Santos 2

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is rolling out free fights as we get closer to their next pay-per-view (Jan. 20). UFC 220 takes place inside the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic is set to defend his gold ag…

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is rolling out free fights as we get closer to their next pay-per-view (Jan. 20). UFC 220 takes place inside the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic is set to defend his gold against Francis Ngannou. The title clash will headline UFC 220. The official YouTube channel of […]

Francis Ngannou Says There’s Only One Reason Stipe Miocic Is UFC Champ

Francis Ngannou is confident as ever as he finishes preparing for his UFC 220 heavyweight title fight against champion Stipe Miocic. Ngannou has skyrocketed to the top of the division in just two years time, having fought his first UFC fight in 2015. Meanwhile, his opponent has been fighting in the UFC since 2011, and […]

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Francis Ngannou is confident as ever as he finishes preparing for his UFC 220 heavyweight title fight against champion Stipe Miocic.

Ngannou has skyrocketed to the top of the division in just two years time, having fought his first UFC fight in 2015. Meanwhile, his opponent has been fighting in the UFC since 2011, and the challenger believes that’s the only reason why Miocic is the current champ and Ngannou isn’t already.

The Cameroonian-Frenchman elaborated during a recent interview with MMA Junkie:

“You say he’s the champion for a reason, yes, he’s the champion for a reason: He’s the champion because the real champ wasn’t there. Now the real champ is on the way, and (Miocic) is not going to be the champion as long.”

“Sometimes I feel like it’s normal because even before my UFC debut, I always believed in myself. I always believed even before I started the sport in my life that I can do something really great. That’s probably the reason that I started the sport – because I feel that when you feel something in you and something that you can’t explain, you just have to do it to show people.”

Ngannou will get his chance for UFC gold at UFC 220 in Boston on January 20, where the immovable object meets an unstoppable force in Stipe Miocic.

Miocic himself is on a five-fight win streak, all by knockout stoppages and four of which occurred in the first round. However, to Ngannou’s point, Miocic nearly began his MMA career in the UFC, and at times he faltered on his way to maturing into the fighter we see today, dropping fights to Stefan Struve and Junior Dos Santos.

Miocic will look to set a UFC record of three heavyweight title defenses with a win over Ngannou at UFC 220.

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Jose Aldo Responds To Anderson Silva’s Second Failed Test

Brazilian MMA legend Jose Aldo has looked up to longtime former champion Anderson Silva for a decade, and now that “The Spider” has been caught for the second time using performance-enhancing drugs, “Junior” feels that Silva’s legacy has taken a massive hit. Aldo expressed his thoughts to MMA Fighting on recent failed drug tests from […]

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Brazilian MMA legend Jose Aldo has looked up to longtime former champion Anderson Silva for a decade, and now that “The Spider” has been caught for the second time using performance-enhancing drugs, “Junior” feels that Silva’s legacy has taken a massive hit.

Aldo expressed his thoughts to MMA Fighting on recent failed drug tests from his fellow Brazilian mixed martial artists as he prepares to rematch Max Holloway for the featherweight belt:

“It’s hard to say what happened. He’s an icon of the sport, he’s an idol for me and for MMA fans. Man, I don’t know, I can’t say much about it because I don’t know what happened.

“But with Junior ‘Cigano,’ no,” he continued. “Junior ‘Cigano’ and I have the same doctor, we come from the same lineage, so I don’t believe he took anything that enhances the performance or something like that. I think he’s more innocent than guilty.

“And I don’t know what happened with ‘Minotouro.’ I think athletes today make the mistake of trying to self-medicate sometimes without asking their own doctors, and that can hurt you. USADA and WADA change a lot the components that are doping, we receive e-mails all the time saying what is and what is not, but sometimes you make a mistake and it happens.”

Silva first tested positive for PEDs following his fight with Nick Diaz at UFC 183. The former longtime middleweight champ was pulled from his main event bout with Kelvin Gastelum at today’s UFC Shanghai for failing pre-fight out-of-competition drug test.

Many fighters have obviously popped for PEDs after USADA began increased, around-the-clock drug testing for UFC competitors in July 2015. As Aldo stated, former heavyweight champion Junior Dos Santos has also been punished for failing a drug test, as well as Antonio Rogerio Nogueira.

Do you think Silva’s legacy has been tarnished following his second failed test?

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Busted: The 10 Worst Drug Test Failures In MMA History

In an effort to clean up the sport, today’s new and enhanced MMA landscape where the UFC has partnered with USADA to implement a world-class anti-doping regimen, drug test failures for performance-enhancing drugs have become much more commonplace and public in fighting than ever before. Perhaps it was to be expected as the sport continues […]

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In an effort to clean up the sport, today’s new and enhanced MMA landscape where the UFC has partnered with USADA to implement a world-class anti-doping regimen, drug test failures for performance-enhancing drugs have become much more commonplace and public in fighting than ever before.

Perhaps it was to be expected as the sport continues to struggle with the program more than two years since its inception, but some high-profile failures have wrecked what would have otherwise been huge events, and some would even argue that the UFC’s partnership with USADA is actually doing more harm than good for the promotion.

That’s ridiculous, of course, as preventing a highly trained athlete from beating another athlete while under the benefit of PEDs is obviously a very good thing – yet there are signs that USADA’s timing and overall implementation could use some smoothing out of their own. Those details are another discussion for another time, however. With big UFC PPVs being ruined by drug test failures seemingly a regular occurrence these days, it brings to light how drug testing has affected events and even fighters’ careers both in the past and present.

We took a look back at the 10 most devastating drug test failures in MMA history, and the results found show just how impactful they have been on the still-young sport. Check them out:

Cris Cyborg – Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Masvidal:

The drug test that UFC women’s featherweight champ Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Justino failed for stanozolol after her thunderous 16-second TKO of Hiroko Yamanaka in December 2011 is arguably the most impactful on this list as it’s caused Cyborg to be followed by a reputation as a steroid user, and probably always will.

She was suspended for one year, stripped of her Strikeforce women’s featherweight belt, and her win over Yamanaka was changed to a no-contest. The failure was one of the main reasons (along with weight) why former UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey wouldn’t fight Cyborg, and that topic was again brought up when original UFC 145-pound champion Germaine de Randamie refused to defend the belt against Cyborg, even if it could certainly be argued there were several other factors in play there.

It appeared Cyborg was headed into a disappointing squandering of her talent when she was popped for a USADA violation last year, but she was able to clear her name of that violation by claiming a prescribed substance she used during her foolish cuts down to 140 pounds for the UFC in 2016. For what it’s worth, she’s apparently complied with all of the rigorous requirements of the UFC’s anti-doping program with USADA (despite rumors otherwise), but her career will always be shrouded by her singular failure in Strikeforce.

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Junior dos Santos Says he Was Devastated by USADA Violation

Junior dos Santos initially didn’t handle his U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) violation well. “Cigano” was set to take on Francis Ngannou last month. The heavyweight tilt would’ve taken place inside Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada on the UFC 215 card. When dos Santos was flagged by USADA, the match-up was pulled. Speaking to Combate, dos […]

Junior dos Santos initially didn’t handle his U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) violation well. “Cigano” was set to take on Francis Ngannou last month. The heavyweight tilt would’ve taken place inside Rogers Place in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada on the UFC 215 card. When dos Santos was flagged by USADA, the match-up was pulled. Speaking to Combate, dos […]

Junior Dos Santos Claims He’s ‘Victim’ Of USADA Violation

Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos was flagged for a potential USADA anti-doping violation back in August. As a result of that violation, he was forced out of his UFC 215 barnburner against Francis Ngannou. Dos Santos’ team clarified the situation by revealing he had tested positive for the diuretic Hydrochlorothiazide in the August […]

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Former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos was flagged for a potential USADA anti-doping violation back in August. As a result of that violation, he was forced out of his UFC 215 barnburner against Francis Ngannou.

Dos Santos’ team clarified the situation by revealing he had tested positive for the diuretic Hydrochlorothiazide in the August 10 out-of-competition test.

The former UFC Champion reflected on the situation in a recent interview with Combate. He noted that he was on his way home after another training session at American Top Team when he learned news via a phone call from his lawyer.

“Until I got home, I thought it was a prank, I couldn’t believe it,” dos Santos said. “I talked to my wife and she told me USADA had notified me. I said ‘For the love of God, it can’t be possible. What could I test positive for?’ I called up the UFC people the following day and they told me it was a diuretic. It was such a small amount of it, it couldn’t even act as a diuretic in my system. It even took me a while to urinate on the day I had to take the test, so it wasn’t acting as a diuretic that day.

“But they found it, and the rule is the same for everyone. Not matter how little of it they found. This certainly shows that there was a contamination. They had nothing else to do but to notify me and pull me out of the fight.”

Despite being flagged for a violation, he’s still pro-USADA and wants MMA to be a cleaner sport. Make no mistake about though, he still doesn’t know where the substance he tested positive for came from.

“At first I was devastated,” dos Santos said. “I’ve been in favor of USADA, I’ve always said how much I support it, how much I want a drugless sport, a fair sport. I’ve always been clean, so my mind is at ease. Everything is under investigation, now, but that’s another problem, because I have no idea where this came from and it’s up to me to prove my innocence, and that’s kind of weird. At first, I used to think ‘Why is USADA there? For cheaters or for the ones who play by the rules end up as victims?’ I’m obviously a victim of a situation that I don’t what it is.

“I’m getting major support from USADA and from the UFC in my search for answers. This not knowing is absurd, it eats you up inside, it’s like tearing your soul apart. I’ve always been very vocal about all this, but now the only thing I ask myself is if USADA is there for cheaters or for innocent people who end up in this situation.”

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