The list continues to grow...
Larry Pepe has tweeted that Forrest Griffin was on testosterone replacement therapy for his UFC 148 bout with Tito Ortiz. Griffin beat Ortiz by unanimous decision in Tito's retirement bout. Here's the tweet:
NSAC's Keith Kizer informed me that Forrest Griffin fought Tito Ortiz at UFC 148 with a therapeutic use exemption for TRT.— Larry Pepe (@LarryPepe) July 13, 2012
Both Forrest and Chael blood tested within normal limits for testosterone in pre-fight tests and a post-fight test on Sunday morning.— Larry Pepe (@LarryPepe) July 13, 2012
Obviously it's not "cheating" to use something the supervising commission approved for you to use. But it remains difficult for me to accept the number of people who are either already on replacement therapy or claiming that they've got low testosterone.
Currently we've got Griffin, Chael Sonnen, Dan Henderson, Frank Mir, Todd Duffee and Dennis Hallman on replacement therapy as well as guys like Ian McCall and Roy Nelson saying they have low testosterone but aren't on any therapy yet. Not to mention Alistair Overeem's own testosterone issues (which weren't TRT related, but still).
There's a real testosterone issue in MMA. Either the sport is causing significant changes to the way the body is able to produce standard hormones via damage sustained through concussions/weight cutting (and thus needs to be reevaluated) or doctors are extremely willing to prescribe the therapy.
From what I've been told and found looking online at articles and forums explaining the easiest ways to get a doctor to just put you on replacement therapy, I'm thinking it's the latter.
Until we have full out of competition testing under a program like VADA, I'm not exactly willing to quietly accept the NSAC blood tests as "good enough."