On multiple occassions, Cody Garbrandt has accused his former teammate turned bitter rival in T.J. Dillashaw of using PEDs. Prior to their title bout at UFC 217, Garbrandt told Dillashaw on the press conference that he “showed everyone how to do it on Team Alpha Male” and that he’s on “everything.”
Other fighters from that camp have also gone on record to suggest PED use. Urijah Faber has implied this numerous times. Chris Holdsworth also claimed that not only did Dillashaw intentionally throw cheap shots to hurt him in training, he also “lost respect” for him because of his “special supplements”.
With all these mudslinging that has happened between former teammates, there weren’t really any specifics mentioned about the accusations... until now.
During another exchange on social media, Garbrandt accused Dillashaw of using EPO. Their initial exchange happened when Cody replied to a tweet quoting Dillashaw of saying he thinks Demetrious Johnson was “too scared” to accept a fight.
No shit! I’m talking about the March fight and then you said you were hurt, must be all that EPO going to your head! Have a safe camp see you in aug! https://t.co/z6lKANIhCD— Cody Garbrandt (@Cody_Nolove) April 18, 2018
Erythropoietin or EPO, is a hormone that stimulates the production of red blood cells. How exactly does that help fighters? Here’s a snippet from David Castillo’s Steroids from A-Z, and how they work to improve athletic performance:
Your red blood cells work like magnets in relation to the oxygen you take in; part of your RBC’s contain hemoglobin, an iron molecule that binds to that oxygen. The more RBC’s your body produces then, the more oxygen your body can hold. This is why it’s so popular and critical in endurance sports like cycling.
This is the same drug 7-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong admitted to using heavily during his career, despite not ever really testing positive for it. In MMA, fighters such as Chael Sonnen, Ali Bagautinov and Gleison Tibau have all failed tests for EPO.
The two-time bantamweight champion in Dillashaw has never failed a drug test in his career. He will rematch Garbrandt at UFC 227 this August.