Wanderlei Silva refutes running from drug test, wants to fight at UFC 175
The last few days have managed to go from the shocking to the surreal as Wanderlei Silva was pulled from his fight against Chael Sonnen at UFC 175 after he allegedly ran from a random and mandatory drug test last Saturday in Las Vegas.
The news first leaked out on Wednesday that Silva was out and he was being replaced by Vitor Belfort in the fight against Sonnen. Later that same evening on "UFC Tonight", Sonnen explained that the story he was told included Silva literally running from the drug testing agent who showed up at his gym to receive a sample.
Turning down or refusing to submit to a random drug test usually will result in license forfeiture or being denied a license all together. Whatever may have happened, Silva was yanked from the fight with Sonnen and the UFC moved on to new plans instead.
Now after two days full of speculation and curiosity, Silva has responded with a video interview he released on Friday that gives his account of what went wrong with the test and why it happened in the first place.
"Last Saturday a guy showed up at my gym with several papers in English saying that I had to sign the papers. I asked him if all the documents were written in English and he said yes. He did not show me any identification," Silva explained. "So I told him that I can’t read English very well and I would need my lawyer present to be able to sign any documents. Then I had to leave since it was the day of (Renan) Barao’s fight and I was really busy here in Vegas."
The "guy" Silva referenced is likely the person responsible for administering the drug test, and if Silva refused to submit to it, the commission would have no choice but to react. When it comes to random drug testing there are no second chances.
Following the events at UFC 173 last weekend, Silva says he then hopped on a plane bound for Brazil to attend this weekend’s UFC Fight Night card in Sao Paolo, where he was scheduled to appear and do a question and answer session with fans.
Now with this dark cloud hanging over his head, Silva says he’s more than willing to submit to a test and he’s hopeful to get this entire ordeal sorted out sooner rather than later.
"In 20 years of career and 50 professional fights, I never refused to test or failed to apply for a license to fight," Silva said. "Once I am back in Las Vegas, I will reach out to the NCSA (Nevada State Athletic Commission) to submit myself to any blood or urine test like I always have done."
Silva is currently in Brazil, although his Q&A session was cancelled for Friday.
The former PRIDE champion hopes to get this all sorted out when he gets home after this weekend, but UFC president Dana White already stated that Silva is "done" for UFC 175 and now his long-term fate lies in the hand of the commission.
Silva remains hopeful, however, that he can still find a way to fix things and face Chael Sonnen at UFC 175 in July.
"This is the fight I wanted the most in my entire life, and I will do everything I can to make this fight happen," Silva said. "All this will get resolved and I will be there on July 5 to put on a great show for all of you, my friends."