Anderson Silva’s career isn’t winding down the way just about anybody thought it would. The consensus greatest middleweight in MMA history seemed nearly untouchable heading into UFC 162, back in 2013 – his first fight against rising top contender Chris Weidman.
Weidman shocked the world by KOing Silva, just over one minute into the second round. Since then, Silva has fought only five times, and has but one officially recorded win to show for it – a somewhat controversial decision over Derek Brunson.
Well... just one win, and a pair of drug test failures.
Silva tested positive for Drostanolone and Androsterone, following a unanimous decision win over Nick Diaz at UFC 183. Eventually he was suspended for one year, and his win over Diaz was overturned to a no-contest. In preparation for a bout with Kelvin Gastelum, in November of 2017, Silva failed his second test, this time under USADA.
In a sample collected in late October of last year, Silva tested positive for Methyltestosterone and a diuretic. And under the purview of the UFC’s recently implemented drug testing program, the penalties could very easily be much harsher than they were under the watch of the Nevada Athletic Commission. For a fighter now in his early 40’s, fans may have unwittingly already seen Silva in a major mixed martial arts contest for the last time.
Speaking to MMA Fighting recently, former opponent Chris Weidman gave his thoughts on Silva’s recent career slide and how – despite not being a surprise – it tarnishes the once-great fighter’s legacy.
“Yeah, it definitely tarnishes his legacy,” Weidman told MMA Fighting. “You fail a drug test, your whole career is in question, in my opinion. And he failed them now twice. So definitely it tarnishes his legacy. I don’t know what else to say about that. It’s just another one bites the dust. It’s one after another. Literally almost every guy I ever fought at this point has failed a drug test.”
“I’m not really that surprised,” Weidman continued. “After the first one and now this one. He’s older now. I don’t know. I’m not super surprised. In Brazil, I know the steroids are very easy to get. A lot of guys were probably on them a long time. I’m not super surprised. The reality is that it definitely tarnishes his legacy.
“All these guys are on it. Even Lyoto Machida failed a drug test. I didn’t think he was that guy. All the guys — Yoel Romero, Vitor Belfort. Go on Sherdog and look at my record. Literally almost every single guy I ever fought has failed a drug test.”
Six of Weidman’s seventeen opponents have failed drug tests in the past, under a variety of circumstances. Yoel Romero is currently suing the manufacturer of a dietary supplement after serving a six-month suspension. At the moment, Weidman is coming off a win over Kelvin Gastelum, his first since 2015, following a 3-fight KO loss skid.
In the meantime, Silva awaits his hearing from USADA to find out his eventual punishment. He could face anywhere up to an eight year ban, but more likely faces somewhere between two to four, depending on whether the drug testing agency takes his previous failure into account.