BJ Penn (12-4-1) and Sean Sherk (31-2-1) are set to do battle on May 24 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the MGM Grand for the UFC lightweight championship. But not before submitting to random drug tests - which both fighters have passed according to MSNBC.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) voted in favor of the extra measure because the "Muscle Shark" tested positive for a banned anabolic agent (Nandrolone) in the wake of his successful title defense against Hermes Franca at UFC 73: "Stacked" in July 2007.
He was subsequently stripped of his crown, suspended and fined by the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) — a ruling that he bitterly denies and blames on a mix of dietary supplements, shoddy lab work, breaches in the "chain of custody" and other factors.
It was enough to get his suspension reduced from 12 months to six; however, Sherk’s reputation has taken a big hit in the court of public opinion throughout the ordeal.
Sherk was present for the NSAC proceedings last month via telephone and agreed to submit the extra sample during the week of April 21 — one full month prior to his fight with Penn.
Now that he (and Penn) are officially clean (and hopefully sober), there can be no excuses one way or the other after May 24.
The best man will win.