Last year, former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum was flagged by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) for a banned substance.
After traces of trenbolone were found in the Brazilian’s system, he was handed a two-year suspension. He will not be eligible to return to Octagon competition until May of 2020. Werdum will be 43 years old by that time, past the age he’d like to continue fighting. Speaking to MMA Fighting recently, Werdum’s manager, Ali Abdelaziz, confirmed Werdum’s days in the UFC are likely over:
“Fabricio Werdum’s next fight is probably going to be in Russia. USADA needs to do what they need to do. Fabricio has a family, he has children, he has kids — he’s gotta do what he’s gotta do, because USADA, that’s a broken system. At the end of the day, I know the UFC is with USADA, but I believe USADA is now hurting the UFC.
“They’re not helping. I think Fabricio’s done. You’ll never see him in the UFC again. … They need to do what they need to do, but at the end of the day, Fabricio has to do whatever he needs to do for his family. I know Dana’s tough, but these guys have hearts. They understand this is his only source of income. Now Fabricio’s 41. After his suspension ends and he comes back, he’ll be 43. What is he going to do? If they open a senior league, we’ll wait. But Fabricio Werdum did not cheat, you understand? How stupid are you to cheat at 41 years old? You’d have to be. I don’t think Frank Mir cheated.
“I don’t think Tom Lawlor’s a cheater, I think those guys just got caught for something like Jon Jones did, and Jon Jones keeps getting slaps on the wrist.”
Prior to his suspension, Werdum suffered a knockout loss to Alexander Volkov in England. It marked the end of a two-fight win streak. “Vai Cavalo” defeated Cain Velasquez to capture the heavyweight title back in May of 2016. However, in his first title defense he was knocked out by Stipe Miocic in just under three minutes.
He had been unable to secure another title opportunity since. If we have seen the last of Werdum inside the Octagon, it’s hard not to make the argument that he is the greatest heavyweight of all time. He’s the only man who can say he has victories over the likes of Velasquez, Mark Hunt, Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira, and Fedor Emelianenko.