What did GSP say about PED’s in MMA? What did Lance Armstrong say about cycling (or at least the previous generation) of participants? What did arguably the two biggest names in baseball admit to using?
Reality check time. It’s more about who’s not using, rather than who is using. We can shun Sonnen but consider that the guy he was scheduled to face in the octagon actually ran away from the test? It says more about sports than it does about one man. This level of testing proved successful, but ultimately a complete disaster for the UFC.
There is no reason to think that if the same level of testing was done on any fighter, that we wouldn’t be creating headlines shaming them into oblivion. I do say though, if you’re going to toss Sonnen under the bus then you are being ignorant. You’re not acknowledging the fact that extreme levels of testing isn’t done equally in all sports. To suggest that your favorite NFL star is clean because they haven’t been busted? To me that’s ignorant. Isn’t it clear to most spectators of sports that testing doesn’t keep up with the work arounds?
Sonnen was simply exposed to an extreme level of testing in which Wanderlei ran away from literally. The rest of the UFC roster, and quite frankly the rest of most professional sports are not subjected to that level of testing. Sure I can’t speak to every sport and athlete but let’s just say there is no reason to believe that Sonnen was doing something out of the ordinary in terms of MMA. If that was the norm but the public didn’t realize it, then is Sonnen truly the villan? An easy target yes. If you really want to toss Sonnen into the sin bin for life, then at least advocate that all MMA and UFC fighters take the same tests that he did. He may have helped the sport in a greater way because it’s a shot over the bow to other fighters. If you’re getting these tests, then you better not to drugs or you’re going to get busted.
This is a story about the testing rather than about Sonnen. If anything, you should say it’s about Sonnen and Wanderlei together. We didn’t get Wanderlei’s test results because he ran. Let’s just assume that both fighters had something in their system going into the fight. In that sense though, in an odd way, they are going in equal. Like Lance Armstrong, was he just competing against a bunch of other racers all on the same drugs? A level playing field albeit an elevated one? Professional athletics aren’t pure and that’s just a reality. Cynical perhaps, but based on what insiders say and based on these recent test results, it’s hardly fiction in my opinion.