Since it was revealed that Anderson Silva has allegedly tested positive for steroids and other prohibited substances, more than a few people have argued the fighter’s legacy will forever be tarnished. Yes, despite the legends claim that he’s always fought “clean.”
Well, one man who believes Silva’s legacy is taken a serious blow is former foe, Rich Franklin, who “The Spider” defeated not once, but twice. Recently the popular, former champ appeared on “Submission Radio“, and Franklin offered this take on Silva’s situation (quotes via Bloody Elbow.com):
“I feel bad for him,” Franklin said. “Honestly. Anderson’s had this long run and then of course when something like this happens the fans are going to start asking ‘well how long has he been on this stuff?’ and for him to have such a run the way that he did and to come back from an injury the way that he did, it’s just, it’s a shame to think that that is going to tarnish his reputation. Like, that that’s what he’ll leave his career on.”
“Even if he doesn’t leave now, that’s the overriding factor that’s going to be remembered. Much like Lance Armstrong. He won all those Tour De France’s, but as soon as he tested positive for PED’s, that’s what people remember; is all that stuff and you tend to forget the accomplishments that the guy had, and so I feel bad for him in that sense. And then you start wondering things like ‘well how long was he on that?’ Like because there are guys in this sport, they know how to play the system, they know how to take their chemicals and beat the test somehow.”
It’s hard to argue with Franklin here, and barring some unforeseen development, chances are Silva will be suspended for at least nine months fairly soon. The 39 year-old is expected to appear in front of the Nevada Commission later this month.
If you missed it, recently it was reported that Silva’s team will claim that the banned substances the fighter took, were only used in a ‘therapeutic’ effort to recover from injuries. Not as performance enhancers. That defense may reduce the ire of some fans, but there’s no question most people will look at Silva somewhat differently from now on.
The other big question is what’s next for Silva? Assuming he does get suspended for nine months? Recently he expressed an interest in fighting Nick Diaz again, but the latter is also facing disciplinary action, after he tested positive for marijuana metabolites once again.
Silva returned to action against Diaz at UFC 183 on January 31st, and scored a unanimous decision win. Due to his failed drug tests, however, the result will likely be overturned to a no contest.