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Shock, disappointment, disbelief. These are but a few of the emotions that spread like wildfire across the mixed martial arts world when the Nevada Athletic Commission revealed that former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva had tested positive for steroids in a Jan. 9 out-of-compeition random drug test.
Silva then tested clean for a Jan. 19 test for performance-enhancing substances, but then failed his UFC 183 fight night drug test on Jan. 31, again testing positive for steroids.
Such test results are rarely, if ever, successfully shown to be false, but Silva has steadfastly denied any wrongdoing. He issued a statement denying ever taking any banned substances following the first positive test, and reiterated that denial in a lengthy statement directed to his fans on Friday via his Instagram account.
“IN RESPECT TO MY FANS
I will not say anything about who I am or what I went through to get here. What matters to me now is the respect from those who have followed my career.
I bled, struggled and fought because I love it and because I always wanted to honor the flag of the country I love so much. I don't know what to apologize for, because I am still waiting for the results and analysis from the specialists that are working to reveal the truth.
Everything that I took since my injury are being analyzed. I look for the truth as much as all those who were surprised with the results. I always played clean, I was never a cheater.
In eighteen years of my career, I never had a problem with exams. In and out of the Octagon I never slipped in compliance with the principles that always guided me. With much honor and dignity I defended my country where ever I fought.
I never used any substances to better my performance in my fights. I love what I do and I would never risk what I took so long to build.
I think that the hurry some people have to condemn me is unfair. The time it takes to destroy a reputation is infinitely less than that is taken to build it.
I am the one who is most eager to settle this situation.
I want those who have always supported me to know that I am still fighting for all the sad happenings of this situation to be cleared.”
Silva was temporarily suspended by the Nevada Athletic Commission on Tuesday, pending a full disciplinary hearing at the commission's March hearing. The date of that meeting has yet to be set.
If Silva is unsuccessful in his bid to counter the test results, his victory over Nick Diaz at UFC 183 will likely be changed to a no contest result, and he would also likely receive a fine and suspension.