We know Vitor Belfort was scheduled to meet UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman in a title fight at UFC 173. We know the Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC) administered a drug test to Belfort in early February. We know that the NAC outlawed the use of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) in late February. We know that Belfort withdrew from that fight the same day the NAC handed down its ruling regarding TRT. We know that Lyoto Machida will replace Belfort at UFC 173. We know that Belfort plans on fighting on without TRT and that he wants to be matched up against the winner of the Weidman versus Machida fight.
What we don't know, and may never know are the results of that drug test, and that is something that fans of the sport deserve to know.
The reason the results of the drug test were not announced is that Belfort had yet to apply for a license to fight in the state of Nevada. While Belfort did agree to submit to the random test, he did not consent to have the results released. At this point, the only person that can release those results is Belfort, and by the sound of things, that is not going happen.
Belfort's attorney, replying to an inquiry from MMAFighting.com's Ariel Helwani said, "The test is not relevant as Vitor is not applying for a license to fight in Nevada at this time."
I would beg to differ about the results not being relevant.
Since it came to light that Belfort was using TRT there has been a cloud hanging over his head, and when he refuses to release the results of a drug test, well, that cloud becomes even darker and more ominous. The only way to remove the doubts that are surrounding Belfort is to release the results of that drug test.
If you are counting on the test results to be made public if Belfort does apply for a license in Nevada in the future, you may get your wish. Then again you may not.
NAC chairman Francisco Aguilar spoke to Bloody Elbow on the subject and said that the results of Belfort's drug test will remain on file. Aguilar added that the potential is there for the test results to be made public if and when Belfort applies for a license to fight in Nevada.
Aguilar said that in his mind he would like to give any fighter the benefit of the doubt that they would comply with the rules set forth for their licensure at the time of their application. In Belfort's case, Aguilar said that the results of the test may or may not be made public depending on the context of when Belfort does apply for a license, adding it would be unfair to speculate what that context will be if and when Belfort's does apply to fight in Nevada in the future.
In short, Belfort doesn't owe it to the fans, the sport, the NAC, or the UFC to release the results of the test. However if he doesn't do so, he should expect the cloud of doubt that currently encircles him to follow him for the rest of his career, and into his eventual retirement.