Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva Tests Positive for Elevated Testosterone Level at UFC Fight Night 33

December 17, 2013
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Bigfoot SilvaAntonio “Bigfoot” Silva failed his post-fight drug test at UFC Fight Night 33 in Brisbane, Australia, UFC officials announced on Tuesday evening.

The heavyweight fighter tested positive for elevated levels of testosterone, following the Dec. 7 event, in which he originally fought to a draw with Mark Hunt. first reported news of the failed test.

“Although [Antonio] Silva is on a medically approved regimen of testosterone replacement therapy, and had been in compliance with therapeutic guidelines on all pre-fight tests performed prior to the event, the results of his test on the day of the event indicated a level of testosterone outside of allowable limit,” UFC officials said in a statement. “Silva has been informed that the elevated testosterone level is a violation of the UFC Fighter Conduct Policy and his Promotional Agreement with Zuffa.”

As a result of the positive test, Silva will receive a nine-month suspension retroactive to the date of the event, according to the UFC. Prior to receiving clearance to compete again, Silva must pass a drug test upon completing the suspension.

Silva and Hunt fought in what many considered a Fight of the Year candidate with their UFC Fight Night 33 main event, and each was awarded $50,000 in bonus money and Fight of the Night honors. Silva is forced to forfeit his bonus money, and it will now go to Hunt.

All fighters on the card were drug tested by an independent third-party laboratory at the event. All fighters passed their drug tests with the exception of Silva.

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  • Jkjohns331

    Dirt bag. I’m sure Hunt would have finished him if he wasn’t on the juice.

    • Mark McDowall

      Big Foot is probably the ONLY fighter that needs TRT. He had a thyroid tumor removed years ago and needs it. So calling him a dirt bag is pretty ignorant…

      • Aaron Ishityou Nott

        Exactly Mark!

      • Peter

        Actually, he had tumors (acromegaly) removed from his pituitary gland (located in the brain). One of the common issues of acromegaly and/or its treatment is low testosterone.

        • Mark McDowall

          Your right. Either way he has a legit excuse for needing TRT. I really think it’s the only legit excuse in the UFC. Getting old, Hendo, and previous steroid abuse, Vitor, sonnet, are not realistic excuses in mu opinion.

  • Stephen Quadros

    Mark Hunt 50k richer.I think this is Big Foot’s second time testing positive also.

    • NateTheApe

      I believe that it will be ruled a no contest

      • Maddawgmar

        It is up to the commission. But generally yes a no contest is awarded after a failed test, the exception is if the failed fighter lost the fight i.e. Chael Sonnen.

  • Mark McDowall

    The most important part of this story that these guys have left out is the following…

    The exact reason for Silva’s failure is yet unknown, but sources said the Brazilian fighter was undergoing testosterone-replacement therapy under the care of a doctor and with the approval of the UFC. Silva’s testosterone levels reportedly were very low prior to the event, which prompted the doctor to recommend increasing the frequency of his treatments, a source said.

    Might help if you include all the facts so we don’t get idiots calling him a dirt bag and other silly fan boy nonsense…

    • earlsimmons

      Sorry but i do not not all the facts to decide whether someone is a dirtbag or not. Just like i do not need to know someone to dislike them. I just do briseph.

      • earlsimmons


  • Joeyjoejoejrshabidu

    So does mark get the win now?

    • NateTheApe

      i believe that it will be ruled a no contest

  • Ryan thompson

    I’m glad Hunt is getting a extra 50k tossed his way for the holidays.
    How is it that some mma fans still think TRT is a anabolic steroid?When TRT is used correctly their testosterone is the same as everyone else which is the reason they use it.The problem with Bighead is that he has tested dirty for anabolic steroids before.

  • Big Tuna

    Lifetime ban and no more trt elite athletes do not need it

  • Jkjohns332

    So him using steroids to try to gain an advantage doesn’t make him a dirt bag?

    • Peter

      Using TRT in an attempt to make his testosterone within normal levels does NOT constitute a “dirt bag.” What advantage are you speaking of? His attempt to have normal levels testosterone? He has a medical condition (acromegaly), which is tumors on his pituitary glad that secrete excess Growth Hormone. One of the side effects of this condition is low testosterone, which can be at very low levels. The week of the fight his levels were lower than normal, so the doctor gave him a higher does of testosterone, which was obviously too much and resulted in levels that were higher than the levels allowed by Zuffa. One week of higher levels will NOT cause a statistically significant increase in performance.

      • earlsimmons

        i cant take drugs to help with my job, why should he? Everyone has problems so dont want to hear that crap.

      • DamianCross

        I don’t dispute the legitimacy of low T but I highly doubt BIGFOOT GODDAMN SILVA honestly suffers from this condition.

      • Sir you are a gentlemen and a scholar.

      • John Lee

        I suppose you think Dan Henderson, Victor Belfort, and all these other older guys are suffering from acromegaly too? Fighters get Low T, from taking too many shots to the head. We shouldn’t enable them more, by giving them something that essentially turns back the clock on their body.

    • Diago

      Listen Ignoranus, “nobody in this day of age uses |steroids|

  • They need to start holding these doctors accountable as well. Yes it’s the athletes decision but this isn’t a junkie and a drug dealer this is a professional sport and we need to set the standards higher for the safety of fighters (Both the person taking and opponent) and for the integrity of the sport. I know Bigfoot has a condition and his levels were low the week of the fight but as a professional you should be very cautious of what’s given to you. Very bad mistake on his part and by the doctor as well. Your telling me the doctor didn’t realize Silva can only have certain levels or can face fines and suspension?

    • Mike mckinney

      I get what you are saying, but the doctors responsibility is to the health of his patient. He should never be making decisions based on rules of a commission.
      It seems way too many people are asking doctors to do things outside of their job. Athletes included. Doctors should only be doing what they believe is best for ones health. Not follow arbitrary rules of a commission, and not what a fighter wants to help him in a cage.

      • Do you think that Silvas condition is such a factor in this that maybe he shouldn’t be fighting then? I’d hate to say that but it just came to my mind.

        • Ian Price

          You’re right in saying so

        • Mike mckinney

          I don’t know his condition well enough to say that. I’m also not against TRT.
          What I was saying is when a guy walks into a doctors office all that should matter is his health. Not his job. The doctors should treat conditions to the best of their abilities. If that breaks a commissions rules then so be it. If it will make a fighter weaker in the cage then so be it.
          It should only be about health.

          • Understood.

          • sarcasticball

            Excellent comment!

          • Rence

            I agree with you in the broad sense that the Dr should only care about the health of his/her patient and not worry about the rules behind the patients job.

            But at the same time, most commissions set the range of allowable testosterone according to normal limits and in many cases have an allowable range that the fighter can fall into and still be within the rules.

            There is no medically sound reason that any Dr should be raising his patients testosterone high enough above normal limits that it would be an issue for an athletic commission. The Dr’s goal with TRT should be to have his/her patient in the “normal” range. There is simply no medical benefit to increasing the levels to the point where the fighter would be in violation.

        • Gary Fredericks

          YES YES YES

  • DamianCross

    Bigfoot Silva suffering from low testosterone is about as legit as Dana White declaring bankruptcy.

  • Pat Garret

    The reality is, trt does not give someone the advantage ,when they are using to maintain normal levels. It just seems fishy,that they are shifting the blame to the doctor. I’m curious to see how much testosterone he had in his system.

    • John Lee

      Yes it does Patsy. Low T is a by-product of fighting (i.e. getting hit in the head too much). That getting-hit-in-the-head-too-much, is an experience that makes guys more savvy in the ring. The COST of that experience, for a lot of guys, is things like Low T. They shouldn’t have to not-pay it when they’re body is paying the price.

      • Gary Fredericks

        I said just after that fight that Silva will test hot AGAIN….surprise surprise!

        Low T is also a byproduct of steroid abuse as well….oh yeah, Silva is a past offender of that as well.

        There should be no place for modifying the athlete period! It’s akin to a one-armed fighter getting his missing limb replaced with an prosthetic arm with an iron fist. Some people are fit to be a professional athlete and some just aren’t. There is far to much room for abuse when it comes to testosterone replacement and therefore it should be banned until the window of abuse is convincingly closed. Either that or make a “natural” set of weight classes and a “free for all” set as well. These frequent pops are just terrible for the sport and keeps the beautiful sport tainted while vying for legitimacy.

        What a big dopey disappointing waterheaded loser!

      • Pat Garret

        That’s Mr. Garret ,to you boy!

  • David

    TRT doesn’t grow you a HEART which Silva showed at that fight!! you either have or not,and Silva has it big time!!

    • Milosc

      While I have personally excused Silva of culpability in this incident (because it appears he was royally screwed by an inept doctor) increased testosterone does indeed have a dramatic affect on fight-bravery and a person’s ability to stand and trade

      Spar with a guy when he’s on, then when he’s off, then tell me there’s no difference. The man with added testosterone will have more ‘balls to fight’ that day, to get in and take chances. Fact

      The man fighting on his own will need ‘courage’. You tell me that’s fair

  • jim

    TRT does not help technicals, does not make you a better boxer etc, either does pot smoking so I hope these people relax on punishments ie: suspensions, just give them a fine and move on

    • Gary Fredericks

      I disagree. Testosterone will help technicals as it will enhance the length, duration, and intensity of a fighter’s ability to train and recover from training. That’s why the younger folks with naturally high testosterone are physically more durable, stronger, and have a much better endurance.

      Fact of the matter is, these guys either screwed themselves up with steroid abuse or are using it to replace testosterone production loss due to age. In the first case, that lack of testosterone is self induced and they should eat their $hit sandwhich and move on….In the latter case, it’s called getting old, past your prime and time to retire. It’s that simple.

  • Thomas Andre

    Look at belfort and tell me TRT dont help….

  • Thomas Andre

    and pls give the w to hunt now, the fight does not deserve to stand as a NC on hes record after a performance like that!


    Let em all juice all they want. Make more interesting stand and bag fights