MMA veteran Chael Sonnen found himself in some trouble for showing elevated testosterone levels after his UFC 117 clash with middleweight champion Anderson Silva, tainting what would have been the most impressive performance of his career.
Fortunately for Sonnen, the Nevada State Athletic Commission has granted him a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) to undergo testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) leading up his July 7 rematch against Silva.
NSAC did impose a few conditions on Chael Sonnen, so he won’t be free to just load up on testosterone. For one, he’ll need to be within NSAC’s allowable testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio of 6:1 a day after the fight, and he’ll also have to stop taking testosterone injections prior to the fight at a date determined by NSAC executive director Keith Kizer.
Without a doubt, things couldn’t be going any better for Sonnen as he awaits his July 7 date with Anderson Silva. Sonnen avoided having to face the “Spider” in his native country when the rematch between the two was relocated from Brazil to Las Vegas, and he’s now been cleared to use synthetic testosterone.
When the rematch between Silva and Sonnen was officially announced, Silva was almost a 4-1 favorite. However, given the way things have gone down, Sonnen’s chances have been significantly improved, and that should lead to a more competitive fight.
Sonnen kept up a relentless pace in his first fight against Silva, and I expect more of the same at UFC 148. A Sonnen victory might end up putting the UFC in a tough spot though, since the 35 year old might have to give up the title if his testosterone levels aren’t within NSAC’s allowable limit after the fight.
However, I don’t think the UFC will have to deal with that scenario, and I expect Silva to emerge victorious at UFC 148. After all, Silva – who fought with a rib injury – did defeat Sonnen at UFC 117, and NSAC won’t allow the Portland native’s testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio to be anywhere as high as it was for that event.
Brett Okamoto, “Chael Sonnen can use testosterone”
David is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and boxing practitioner who has watched and studied MMA for the past 9 years. Send him your questions @davidkingwriter.