At 36 years old, Middleweight (Light Heavyweight?, Franklinweight?) Vitor Belfort has become one of the most controversial fighters on the UFC roster. In most cases, MMA fans would be clamoring for a fighter coming off consecutive spectacular KO wins over top 5 fighters to contend for the title. However, Belfort's use of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) has fans criticizing, rather than praising, his accomplishments.
In an interview with Sherdog, Vitor addressed the skepticism and controversy he's faced since beginning the treatment:
The TRT, the shot just gets you level in the system. So, the bottom line my level is always lower than a regular guy. I never go [over] the limit, the level. So, what I'm trying to do, I'm just trying to be fair in my career against my opponent. The TRT is just something my body cannot produce. I'm doing the treatment with doctors, with bloodwork, so everything's pretty black and white. But, all of guys are out there doing a lot of stuff but they don't get caught because they don't have blood.
Of course, one of the biggest criticisms of Belfort taking TRT has been that he failed a post-fight drug test following Pride 32 for 4-Hydroxytestosterone. That failed test caused NSAC executive Keith Kizer to say he doubts Nevada would approve his therapeutic use exemption, if Vitor were scheduled to fight in Las Vegas."The Phenom" avoided saying whether or not he'd forgo the treatment if it were necessary as Dan Henderson did at UFC 161.
Following UFC 162, where Chris Weidman pulled off an incredible upset KO of former 185 lb. champ Anderson Silva, Belfort campaigned for a chance to face the newly crowned champion. With Weidman and Silva set to rematch at UFC 168, Vitor still has no new fight scheduled. Former contender Chael Sonnen challenged him to a bout at the same event in Las Vegas. Belfort hasn't responded, but said he plans on talking with Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta over the next week to determine his next opponent.