Jon Fitch responds to PED accusations from Firas Zahabi

Jon Fitch
Image: DAZN

Last week, Tristar head coach Firas Zahabi went off on Rory MacDonald’s UFC 220 opponent Jon Fitch, accusing the former World Series of Fighting welterweight champion of PED use.

Speaking on The MMA Hour on Monday, Jon Fitch responded to these comments from Zahabi.

“I don’t care,” he told host Luke Thomas (transcript via MMA Fighting). “I don’t live my life caring what other people say or think. If you’re going to go through your life worrying about other people and what they think, you’re going to be a loser. You’re not going to get far. So I don’t care. People can think whatever they want to think, I live my life for me and my family.”

Jon Fitch did in fact fail drug test in his World Series of Fighting days, and was remarkably candid about the ordeal during his appearance on The MMA Hour.

“That short period of time, I broke and I thought I was missing out on something,” Fitch said. “I fell down a spiral of depression. I was struggling with my personal family life and finances. I got to a place where you could see other guys around you — I found out about guys who I fought who were on TRT, the therapeutic exemptions, I learned about Vitor Belfort’s testosterone being covered up and him being allowed to compete anyway. There were rumors of other guys, that happening too also. And then I was taking a 70 percent pay cut, at least 70 percent pay cut from going from the UFC to World Series of Fighting.

“So I was thinking, like, why am I holding myself to this standard and making less money and my family’s struggling? Just all kinds of excuses. Any kind of excuse to rationalize why it was okay to cheat against a cheater like Palhares. And I had no idea what I was doing. It was pure comedy, me trying to use this shit. I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t even grapple that entire training camp because I was so sore from the injections, because I was doing something wrong. I’m not even sure what I was doing wrong. But yeah, that was probably the stupidest thing and the best thing that ever happened to me.”

Jon Fitch added that, in his eyes, things like Testosterone Replacement Therapy aren’t actually all that beneficial in professional fighting.

“That’s my thing too is I don’t that testosterone really does anything in a weight class sport, except make you look awesome,” Fitch said. “I could eat garbage food and look awesome, and I had the libido of a 19-year-old. But other than that, I didn’t recover better, I wasn’t any stronger, I wasn’t any faster. I don’t think I was doing enough of it to get those benefits, but I think if you do do enough of it then you put on weight, and I’m not going to benefit from putting on 15 pounds of muscle. I’m not going to be able to get down to the weight class and be strong and be able to compete like that.

“So I really was confused with what people were doing, because I was trying to figure this all out online by myself, I’m sure I was probably doing some things wrong. But yeah, I don’t really see the benefits of it, and I think guys who are using [PEDs] are using it kind of as a crutch. I think it’s not the magic pill everybody thinks it is.”

This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 4/22/2019.