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UFC 188: Cathal Pendred: Cain is the last person I would suspect of taking PEDs

Irish UFC welterweight sensation, Cathal Pendred discusses the Reebok deal, the UFC's new anti-doping program, media misrepresentations and more.

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Tomorrow, Mexico City gets its second taste of ultimate MMA action when UFC 188 opens the Octagon up to another great night of fights. Irish welterweight sensation, Cathal Pendred will be among those athletes exchanging violent poetry inside the cage, marking his fourth outing with the promotion.

Yesterday, the Three Amigos Podcast sat down with Pendred in an expansive interview that covered several topics in the second half of a two-part feature. In this segment, Cathal discusses the Reebok deal, the UFC's new anti-doping program, media misrepresentations and more. Here's what he had to say:


Three Amigos Podcast: The UFC announced the details of their new drug testing program recently, and we've seen a few fighters come out accusing other fighters of using; Ben Rothwell kind of accused Cain Velasquez for instance. What are your thoughts on that, and on the drug testing program?

Cathal Pendred:
I don't know where Ben Rothwell is getting that from, to be honest. Maybe he's just trying to hype a fight between him and Cain, but Cain would be one of the last people I would suspect of taking PEDs.

In terms of the program itself, what they've implemented now is fantastic and it has been needed for a long time. There has been PED abuse within this sport for a long time and it was very easy to get away with because you were just getting tested on fight night most of the time, so guys knew when to stop taking PEDs to get away with it.

This is definitely going to effect a lot of fighters and as a clean athlete I'm delighted. I've fought against guys on PEDs before and I have a lot of disdain for that. Regulating this sport is more important than most other sports, because the safety of the other competitor comes into question if someone is on PEDs. Someone on PEDs hits harder, they go harder. It's not like if you're a cyclist or a sprinter and you take PEDs and it doesn't directly affect the other competitors. Thankfully the UFC has taken the right steps and I think a lot of guys are either going to get caught, or they're not going to be the same fighters they once were.


Three Amigos Podcast: This will be your fourth fight in the UFC, so you'll be on the lowest tier of the Reebok deal. With that in mind, will this deal be putting bread on your table, or taking slices away?

Cathal Pendred:
I'm definitely losing out on money in a big way, to be honest. But you know, I've just got to go with the flow. The decision has been made. The UFC have done great things for the sport of MMA and the sport most likely wouldn't be where it is today if it wasn't for the UFC. I'm hoping this is just another one of those steps and I will eventually see the fruits of this deal. From the get-go, though, I'm losing out on quite a considerable amount of money.


Three Amigos Podcast: Conor has obviously been getting a lot of attention and a lot of promotional specials and world tours. Are those something you want to be part of, even if it's just to get your name out there and get bigger names calling you out?

Cathal Pendred: I already get called out just from being associated with Conor. People talk about me hanging off Conor's coattails and stuff, which is pretty ridiculous when you look at my record. Conor doesn't come into the fights with me. I am where I am today because of the fights I've won and my success in the ring.

Conor has done great things for the sport in Ireland, and globally to be honest. He's a fantastic superstar for the sport and he's bringing more eyes onto it, but I don't necessarily want to be associated with world tours that are concentrating on him and his fights. I want to build my own path. I'm my own person and my own fighter, and I want to get my own steam behind me.

I've got a great opportunity coming up; there's a much rumoured event in October in Dublin and that would be a Fight Night card. Conor, at this stage of his career, wouldn't be involved in a card of that size so I think that would be a great place for me to be promoted by the UFC. I would be a big name on that card and I'm hoping going into that fight at 4-0 in the UFC that I'll get a big name opponent and get promotion from that. I think my time is coming. I'm staying patient. I know it'll come, so I'm not worried.


Iain Kidd & Steph Daniels: Cathal has some points about the media below, and they're good points. Generally fighters respond to the questions they're asked during an interview. They don't usually bring topics up out of the blue. Sometimes fans and readers lose sight of that, and attack fighters answering questions as if they're going out of their way to complain or whine.

When he talks about the media spinning things, he's right. This industry is driven by traffic, for better or worse. Sadly, a lot of readers only read headlines, headlines which are usually specifically written to get attention, without taking in the context. I wanted to put this interjection here to make sure everyone takes a second to understand his points here, and maybe to think twice before attacking a fighter for talking about something, especially when they're simply answering a question. We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming!

Three Amigos Podcast: You've been in the headlines after you commentated about Joe Rogan's commentary on your last fight. We spoke to Brian Stann recently and he said if a fighter ever commented on his commentary he would reach out to them, discuss it and if he was wrong he would apologize. On that note, has Joe Rogan reached out to you at all or said anything?

Cathal Pendred:
No, he hasn't. The headlines that have been coming out in the last couple of days are a bit weird, to be honest, because in typical media fashion they're making it out as if I'm just coming out and randomly complaining about Joe and talking about my last fight.

I got asked these questions, but it's other people thinking about the commentary on my last fight, it's the media asking me about it. That's the last thing I'm thinking about a few days out from my fight, and the headlines are making it out to be much worse than it is.

Like I said, I was a bit disappointed watching the fight. Joe Rogan does his job and I do mine. He hasn't reached out to me, I don't even know if he's seen what was said. I'll maybe find out in the next couple of days when I see him around the weigh-ins etcetera.

Three Amigos Podcast: Your fight this weekend is on the Fight Pass prelims, which has the benefit of letting your fans back home see you earlier. You have a lot of upside and you're probably going to be a big part of the UFC's strategy in Europe going forward, especially since you're a big name in Ireland and in the UK. Many think it just doesn't make a lot of sense to have you on the prelims. Do you have any thoughts on your position on the card?

Cathal Pendred:
I'm not too concerned about it. I've been asked about this quite a few times, and then the media spin it as if I'm complaining about it. Obviously everyone else is surprised I'm not higher up on the card. I'm a little bit surprised myself for a couple of reasons; I was flown out for the press tour in April to promote the show, and my opponent made his debut on the last Mexican card and he was on the main card that time. I just assumed from that that this fight would have been on the main card.

It would be nice to be higher up the card, but I'm just focused on the job at hand. Going 4-0 is my main priority and the rest will take care of itself. I'll keep winning and that'll take care of itself. I'll be on the main card and in the main event soon enough.

You can listen to this interview by going to the 01:18 minute mark of the latest episode of the Three Amigos Podcast.