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Tibau apologizes for EPO use: I didn't imagine I was doing something wrong

Gleison Tibau has dropped his plans to appeal his two years USADA suspension, and now he's opening up about exactly why he decided to do so.

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

If there's anything good to be said about Gleison Tibau's drug test failure, it's that he's taken a pretty remarkably open stance on explaining what his process in dealing with the news has been. He tested positive for Erythropoietin (EPO) in a pair of drug test failures (one in competition, one out of competition) surrounding his November 7th win over Abel Trujillo at UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Henderson 3. Tibau was handed a two year suspension for his USADA drug testing policy violation, a punishment that he planned to appeal.

Recently, he dropped that appeal, due to concerns about the expense and the feeling that it wouldn't lead to a sizeable reduction in punishment. But in a recent interview with MMA Fighting, he also spoke on accepting responsibility for taking a banned substance, and while he's not exactly hiding anything, to hear him tell it, he had no clue that what he was doing would get him in trouble:

"I'm upset," he said. "I have to apologize to my fans because it was a medical mistake. We used a substance we thought wouldn't be anything, we used it out of competition. I have my conscience clear that I took it without imagining I was doing something wrong. It's going to be hard for me, but I will pay the price for my mistake."
"I'm not speaking about myself here, but for others, two to four years is too much for a suspension," he said. "I think one year is enough for an athlete to recognize his mistakes, redeem himself and don't make any mistake again. But two to four years... The athlete has a family and a life, he needs money. If he can't fight in this period, what is he going to do? I think it's too much."

On the flip side, Tibau (who has been fighting since 1999), how has two years to rest up, work on his technique, heal old injuries, and work on making a comeback. From the sound of things, he seems pretty dedicated to the idea that he will continue his fighting career, so fans will just have to wait and see what he brings to the table two years from now.

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