Have these positive steroid tests ruined Anderson Silva’s legacy?

anderson silva ufc183We reported that former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva tested positive for steroids earlier this month after defeating Nick Diaz in the main event of UFC 183. The Nevada State Athletic Commission met Tuesday and handed down a temporary suspension for Silva as well as two other fighters. Here’s what we know about the things that Silva tested positive for:

  • Silva tested positive for Drostanolone metabolites and Androstane in a January 9 pre-fight blood test, and also tested positive for the same thing in a January 31 fight night urine test. Both Oxazepam and Temazepam were found in his system during the fight night urine screening as well. 
  • Silva passed a drug screening on January 19

So Silva failed a test and then tested clean prior to the fight, and then tested positive again on the night of the fight with the addition of drugs associated with anti-anxiety medications.

Silva had suffered a broken leg in a December 2013 bout against Chris Weidman, an injury that many believed he would never recover from to compete again in MMA. Silva had never tested positive for any drugs in his nine year career in the UFC. He had never missed weight or had any documented transgressions other than wreaking absolute havoc on his opponents in devastating fashion. One of the many reasons fans and pundits considered him the greatest mixed martial artists of all time.

Have the positive steroid tests ruined his legacy?

Could we assume that Silva had never taken steroids prior to the bout with Diaz? Could we assume that he took the steroids to aid in his recovery from the broken leg? After all, he fought just 13 months after the injury and it was an injury that’s very difficult to mentally recover from. That could explain the anti-anxiety medicine that was found in his system the night of the fight right?

Or could the anti-anxiety medicine be attributed to Silva knowing that he had been taking steroids in preparation for the fight with Diaz?

We’ll probably never know. However, the way Silva got caught leads me to believe that he had not taken steroids before. How do you go nine years without getting caught and then get caught twice within a month? However, it’s true that drug testing in MMA has increased substantially in the past couple of years.

Drostanolone is used in body building circles primarily for “cutting cycles”. Is it possible that Silva used it to help him make weight since he may not have been able to do cardio as he usually would due to rehabbing his leg injury?

I want to give Silva the benefit of the doubt. It’s hard to with the way he got caught, but I can’t help think that the leg injury is the culprit and his reasoning for taking the drugs.

I probably will look at him differently now, but I’m not sure I can let one mishap destroy his entire career in my eyes.

How do you look at Silva’s career now, knowing the information that we know at this point?