The amount of MMA fighters testing positive for performance enhancing drugs is on the rise, and former UFC champion Anderson “The Spider” Silva believes stricter punishments need to be put in place to correct the situation.
Silva is no stranger to PED’s in MMA, in fact 7 of his 15 octagon opponents have failed a drug test at some point in their UFC careers. The former opponents include Chael Sonnen, Stephen Bonnar, Vitor Belfort, Forrest Griffin, James Irvin, Nate Marquardt and Chris Leben.
Although “The Spider” was able to notch wins over all those who tried to cheat against him, the former champ admits that PED’s are a real problem in today’s MMA:
“This is not bad for me, this is bad for the sport,” Silva told MMAjunkie. “People around the world love the UFC, but the kids love the UFC, and the families love UFC. It’s bad for the sport. I don’t think this is good because the sport can change the lives of the kids and the people in the world.
“When the guys test for the steroids, it’s bad because this is a problem. It’s bad not just for the UFC, but for the sport.”
The UFC has made a strong effort to increase testing over the past year, but there will always be athletes looking to score an unfair advatage over their opponents. This is something Anderson knows, and it is why he believes the punishments for positive tests should be made more severe:
“When the guys test for the steroids, (they should have) no more fights,” Silva said. “When you use the steroids, you use them for a long time. When you use the steroids for a long time, you have a problem. It’s a drug and it’s not good for the sport.”
Anderson Silva will return to the octagon on January 31/2015, where he meets former Strikeforce champ Nick Diaz in the main event of UFC 183.