MANILA, Philippines – The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) was forced to cancel the rematch between Dan Henderson and Lyoto Machida on Sunday, April 17 (PH Time) after the latter’s disclosure of using a performance-enhancing drug.
According to a statement released by the UFC on Thursday, April 14 (Manila time), Machida admitted to the violation during an out-of-competition sample collection by the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) last week.
“Machida stated that he was unaware that the substance was prohibited both in and out of competition and, in accordance with the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, his disclosure of usage will be taken into consideration by USADA during any potential results management and adjudication process,” the statement read.
While USADA did not name the banned substance that Machida took, the Japanese-Brazilian fighter’s Facebook post identified it as DHEA, which is an endogenous steroid hormone.
Machida claimed that he has no knowledge regarding the prohibition of the substance’s usage from competition.
“I’m here to tell you that I was caught by surprise by this news. It has been very difficult for me. I’ve trained a lot for this fight. I’ve dedicated a lot with all my teammates. I want to tell you that I really didn’t know about this substance, so I listed it on my declaration form amongst everything else I was taking, and this substance was recently banned in 2016, so I take the blame for not knowing that, and I’d like to say I’m really sorry and apologize to my fans, teammates, and my family. I always try to play by the book, but unfortunately this happened,” he said.
A former UFC light heavyweight champion, Machida had never failed a drug test prior to the unfortunate incident.
Meanwhile, UFC officials publicly confirmed that Henderson will be re-booked for another event on a later date. – Rappler.com
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