by Ivan Trembow – MMAWeekly.com
In a developing news story that broke on Wednesday’s edition of MMAWeekly Radio, MMAWeekly has learned that Stephan Bonnar tested positive for an anabolic steroid after his fight against Forrest Griffin at UFC 62 on August 26th.
The specific banned substance that was found in Bonnar’s post-fight urine sample after his unanimous decision loss to Griffin was Boldenone Metabolite, according to the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s drug testing results.
Boldenone is an anabolic steroid that is intended for use only by veterinarians, specifically to help rehabilitate injured horses. It has several brand names for veterinary use, including Equigan, Equipoise, Ultragan, and Ganabol. It is on the banned substances list of all the major athletic commissions and sports leagues.
In a formal complaint filed on Wednesday by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, Bonnar was informed of his positive test result and was made aware that the NSAC has the right to suspend and/or fine him for his positive test result, pending a disciplinary hearing.
The amount of the fine can be up to $250,000, or the complete amount of the fighter’s purse for the event, whichever amount is greater. In this case, Bonnar’s purse for the August 26th fight was $16,000, so the maximum possible fine is $250,000.
The length of the suspension can be whatever the NSAC deems appropriate, but the suspensions have ranged from three to twelve months in past instances of mixed martial artists and boxers testing positive for banned substances.
According to the NSAC complaint, Bonnar’s side has 20 days from the date of the complaint to issue a formal response to the NSAC in writing, which would put the date at September 26th.
After Bonnar’s side has formally responded, the NSAC will set the date for a disciplinary hearing, at which Bonnar will be “entitled to be represented by counsel of his choice” and will also be entitled to “cross-examine witnesses, present evidence, and argue on his own behalf before a decision is made by the Commission.”
Even before his drug test results came back positive for a banned substance, Bonnar had already been medically suspended for six months due to a broken right thumb, so it’s unlikely that he would have fought again this year even if he hadn’t tested positive for a banned substance at UFC 62.
Boldenone is not generally a popular drug among bodybuilders because of the fact that traces of the drug remain in the user’s system for several months after use. According to Food and Drug Administration filings, which cited the Office of New Animal Drug Evaluation, Boldenone is intended for use by veterinarians as “an aid for treating debilitated horses when an improvement in weight, hair coat, or general physical condition is desired.”
The FDA filings added, “Federal law restricts this drug to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian.” Due to potential health risks for humans, the FDA has gone so far as to say that Boldenone “should not be administered to horses intended for human consumption.”
The possible side effects of Boldenone when used by humans include high blood pressure, increased water retention, elevated levels of estrogen, possible hair loss, flu-like symptoms, anxiety, and acne.
A total of eighteen fighters competed on the UFC 62 card on August 26th, and four of those eighteen fighters were drug tested by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. In addition to Bonnar, the other fighters who were drug-tested were Chuck Liddell, Renato “Babalu” Sobral, and Forrest Griffin, all of whom passed their drug tests.
With a cost-per-fighter of $278.40 to run all of the tests for steroids, stimulants, and recreational drugs, the total amount spent on drug testing for UFC 62 was $1,113.60.
At the UFC Fight Night card in Las Vegas on August 17th, four of the eighteen fighters who competed were drug tested by the NSAC. Those fighters were the two main event fighters, Diego Sanchez and Karo Parisyan, as well as two fighters who were selected at random, Josh Koscheck and Jason Von Flue. Sanchez, Parisyan, Koscheck, and Von Flue all passed their drug tests.
As with UFC 62, the total amount spent on drug testing for UFC Fight Night was $1,113.60.