Kickboxing and MMA veteran Alistair Overeem made headlines this week for all the wrong reasons. The 42-year-old recently received a yearlong suspension from GLORY Kickboxing due to a drug test failure stemming from his match with Badr Hari in November of last year.
While Overeem himself has yet to give an official statement, a core member of his fight team wants to give their side of the story. Trainer Nick Hemmers recently spoke via Dutch publication AD (H/T MMA Mania), clarifying that Overeem used an “anti-inflammatory” drug to treat a back injury he sustained while preparing for his 2021 GLORY title fight with Rico Verhoeven. The ‘Demolition Man’ was eventually forced to pull out of that fight due to injury.
Per the report, Hemmers re-affirmed an earlier claim from Overeem’s camp that the substance in question was a “non-performance enhancing drug” and that only a “minimal amount” was detected. He also described the current issue as “a bit of an inflated story.”
“He has not used any means to be stronger in the ring. I think it’s nonsense that his victory was taken away. We simply won that match against Badr, and I will always say that.”
All told it sounds like the fighter is hoping to move past the situation and maybe even still get a fight against Verhoeven sometime in the not too distant future.
“I just keep training him. We have a good connection, so we keep going and come back stronger. Everyone is waiting for only one fight: Alistair against Rico. I hope it will still happen.”
Because of the test failure, Overeem’s win over Badr Hari was overturned to a No Contest. A portion of his purse was also reclaimed by the promotion as a fine for the infraction.
About the author: Milan Ordoñez has been covering combat sports since 2012 and has been part of the Bloody Elbow staff since 2016. He’s also competed in amateur mixed martial arts and submission grappling tournaments. (full bio)