Coach: Anderson Silva innocent; tainted supplement caused failed drug test
Upon finding out last month that he’d been flagged for a potential U.S. Anti-Doping Agency violation, Anderson Silva immediately proclaimed his innocence to strength and conditioning coach Rogerio Camoes.
“I’ve been with Anderson for many years,” Camoes said Tuesday on Brazilian TV show “Revista Combate,” “and when we talked the first thing he told me was, ‘Master, I didn’t take anything.’”
Silva (34-8 MMA, 17-4 UFC) was flagged Nov. 10 for a potential anti-doping violation stemming from an out-of-competition sample collected on Oct. 26. As a result, Silva was removed from his UFC Fight Night 122 headliner vs. Kelvin Gastelum, who went on to defeat replacement opponent Michael Bisping on Nov. 25 in Shanghai.
The last time Silva addressed the situation, he said he was “working very closely with USADA to find out the reason” for his failed drug.
Camoes said Silva and his team learned of the failed test through the media, calling it “drastic” and “very tense” to get the news as they prepared to travel to China for UFC Fight Night 122.
“I believe and trust his word,” Camoes said. “Anderson is a very mature guy, very experienced. And he’s aware that – he wouldn’t use something and risk getting suspended and getting his image tarnished. So we believe in contamination of some product or supplement. All the products that he used will be analyzed, so we can possibly prove there was contamination. The process is slow. It’s not overnight. It requires time and investment. It’s very expensive.”
Although this latest potential violation is Silva’s first under the USADA program, “The Spider” is potentially a repeat offender. He failed a drug test around the time of his UFC 183 fight with Nick Diaz in January 2015 before USADA partnered with the UFC.
Silva was handed a one-year suspension and $380,000 fine from the Nevada State Athletic Commission for his 2015 failure, which he claimed was the result of a tainted sexual enhancer. It appears Silva will be using a similar defense again in this case.
Camoes has come under fire from critics who point to him has being responsible for Silva’s failed test, which he responded to directly.
“I believe that people who’ve known me for a while and follow my work know that I’d be the last person to do this,” Camoes said. “First, because I know anabolic steroids from A to Z. I’m a bodybuilder. The first doping (test) I did in my life was in 1987 at the Colorado Springs Olympic Training Center. I was on the judo team competing internationally. I was tested for 10 years of my life. So I know it from A to Z.
“I’d be the last person to tell someone to take something and get caught. Unless I was crazy, I’d be the last person to encourage Anderson to do something like that. On the contrary, I’m the one who’s the most concerned about that.”
Silva, 43, has insisted he will continue fighting, a sentiment echoed by Camoes despite “The Spider” looking at a likely suspension of more than six months.
“I think in life, when something is taken from you, you start wanting and valuing it more,” Camoes said. “He’s always saying, ‘I want to fight.’ The thing he wants the most is to fight. So I think he will go back to fighting. I find it unlikely that he won’t fight again. Before this happened, I remember talking to (Luiz) Dorea (boxing coach) and I said, ‘This guy still fights for another three, four years. This is a man who’ll fight until he’s 45, 46.’ He was like a kid – so happy.
“I think everything will be clarified. Of course, there will be a penalty. There’s no way there won’t be. We know USADA’s rules with doping. Even if it’s contamination, the fighter is responsible for what he takes. He needs to be careful with that.”
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Publication Date: December 7, 2017, 12:00 am
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