UFC heavyweight and former title challenger Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva has been suspended for nine months and stripped of his post-fight bonus award following a failed drug test for his “Fight Of The Year” candidate bout against Mark Hunt earlier this month at UFC Fight Night 33.
MMAJunkie first reported the news on Tuesday night.
Silva was granted a therapeutic use exemption for testosterone replacement therapy for the bout. However, his levels were higher than the allowable limit on the day of the fight, triggering the failed test. Silva and Hunt fought to a majority draw in the main event of the card, and the outcome has now been changed to a no contest for Silva, though it will remain a draw on Hunt’s record.
In addition to the nine-month suspension, Silva has been stripped of the $50,000 bonus he received for “Fight Of The Night” on the UFC Fight Night 33 fight card. This is Silva’s second drug test failure of his MMA career as he also failed a test following a July 2008 win over Justin Eilers for testing positive for boldenone. Silva has battled a condition called acromegaly during his life.
Silva posted the following statement on his Facebook page following the news:
“Clarification: Months before my fight I looked for the UFC doctor Marcio Tannure in Brazil so I could start the hormonal replacement “TRT” which was authorized and recognized by a professional. I started the treatment and 2 weeks before my fight I did all the exams required by the UFC. My testosterone level continued to be low so I was recommended by the doctor to increase the dosage. Unfortunately my level increased too much and caused me to suspend. I only did what was recommended by someone trained who understands about the subject therefore it was not my mistake. I’m cool because I know that the mistake was not made by me,I never tried doing anything wrong for my fight.”