When former Bellator champion and Olympic veteran Hector Lombard got popped for the anabolic steroid desoxymethyltestosterone (DMT) on Jan. 3, few spectators were actually caught off guard. Lombard looked like a greek statue, and that could have been detrimental to him in the end.
Lombard explained himself in front of the Nevada Athletic Commission in March; He claims he took a pill to battle flu-like symptoms after his weigh-in for UFC 182 and that the pill was given to him by the "friend of a friend", fellow Olympian Julie Malenfant Northrup. The NAC didn't want any of it. Instead, they handed out the most severe sentenceever handed out to a fighter in the history of the Ultimate Fighting Championship: an unprecedented one-year suspension, his win overturned to a no contest, and a total fine of over $ 70,000.
On the latest edition of Ariel Helwani's The MMA Hour, Lombard gave his opinion on the verdict:
"Of course it was unfair," Lombard said of the NAC's punishment. "Have they done it before? No. (They) made an example out of me. I mean, come on. But what can I do. It's always that way. When the time comes for Hector, it's always that way, looking to set an example. [...] I do believe that if it would've been somebody else, it would be different," Lombard added. "But obviously it's me. It's good that it happened, though. It's good to see, when you're on the bottom, who are the ones who are going to kick you."
Lombard feels that his impressive physique might be the reason why the NAC punished him so hard, and that he is no stranger to being under general suspicion, ever since his days in the Olympics, but that you can't always judge a book by it's cover.
"It's always been like that ... but I'm used to it. I swear, it's not my fault that I look this way. There's a lot of people, and I'm not going to mention names, but they look like they're fat and they're using [PEDs] for their career. But because of the way I look, obviously there's going to a lot of criticism."
However, Lombard still insists that he is innocent, and despite his superhero-like physique, has never ever taken any performance enhancing drugs. By the time his suspension is up, he will approach the age of 38. Nevertheless, Lombard promises to return and fight through all of this.
"I haven't (ever taken any PED prior to any fight)," Lombard reiterated. "I mean, there is no secret. Every fight before, I got tested. The one thing that's going to keep me going now is going to be this, this whole situation. This is what's going to keep me going, I've got to stick around for a few more years to prove that I don't need none of that. I'm not going to stop. I'm going to keep going, and next year I will be back."