In advance of this compelling middleweight showdown, Brunson has thrown a fairly serious accusation Hall’s way. He claims his middleweight rival has been using performance enhancing drugs.
This accusation began with a series of Tweets back in July, shortly after Brunson’s originally scheduled bout with long-time contender Gegard Mousasi fell through. Those Tweets, which Brunson directed right to the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) can be seen below.
— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) July 28, 2016
@usantidoping tired of getting texts from people talking about your habits. I'm putting you away in the 1st
— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunson) July 29, 2016
This week, in an interview with Bloody Elbow, Brunson once again addressed this suspicion.
“I’ve heard it,” said Brunson, told Bloody Elbow. “I’ve heard it from other people.”
Brunson then added that the reason he broached the issue with Hall on Twitter, is that he believed doing so might discourage Hall from doping in the lead-up to their fight.
“I heard it from a legit source, so I decided to let him know,” Brunson explained. “If you put it out there; that you think somebody is gonna be doing it for that fight, they’re probably gonna be less likely to do it, because they know that the eyes are on them.”
Finally, Brunson also addressed anyone that might assume he himself has used performance enhancing drugs in the past, stating that his rippling physique is the result of hard work and nothing more.
“Some people may look at me and be like, ‘Oh he’s been on PEDs before, you can assume that,’ but you would never ever hear that from somebody, you would never hear that from a legit source because I’ve never done that,” Brunson explained. “I’ve always been a clean fighter, always lifting weights. I got my gains from working hard, opposed to the way other people get it; with PEDs.
Despite these weighty accusations from Brunson, it’s important to note that Hall has never tested positive in his 18-fight career, and as he suggests in the Tweet above, he’s certainly been tested.
Of course, this isn’t to suggest there isn’t a real PED problem in MMA at the moment.
Do you think Brunson’s accusations or out of line, or are his suspicions justified? Sound off, PENN nation!