Chael Sonnen seemingly couldn't talk his way out of a second (most recent) failed drug test, one that detected performance-enhancing banned substances human growth hormone (HGH) and recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO).
In a bold move, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and FOX Sports have officially cut ties with Chael Sonnen in the wake of his multiple failed drug tests (read full details here), according to a statement obtained by MMAFighting.com.
Read it in full:
"The UFC and FOX Sports organizations announced today the termination of their respective broadcasting services agreements with analyst Chael Sonnen. This decision comes in light of Sonnen failing a second test conducted by the Nevada Athletic Commission for banned substances in June. Sonnen was previously under temporary suspension by the Nevada Athletic Commission for failing an initial test conducted in May."
Sonnen, who retired from mixed martial arts (MMA) earlier this month as a result of the fiasco, will apparently no longer serve as co-host alongside Kenny Florian on FOX Sports 1's "UFC Tonight" program, as well as the pre- and post-fight shows.
"American Gangster" often used the high-profile platform as a personal promotional vessel to call out opponents such as Wanderlei Silva and get his points across on controversial topics. It was at times a conflict of interest, but Sonnen more than made up for it with his outgoing personality, expert analysis, breakdowns and natural ability to carry the show.
Indeed, he was a tremendous improvement over Karyn Bryant, who often fumbles with awkward transitions. UFC and FOX did not name an immediate replacement for Sonnen, but it's safe to assume that fellow retired fighter and frequent guest host, Brian Stann, has the inside track on the position alongside Florian.
It's seemingly too soon to determine whether or not Sonnen, a "company man" willing to take on all-comers and go above and beyond the call of duty throughout his tumultuous tenure, will be excluded from a "lifetime" position with UFC vis-a-vis Matt Hughes, Chuck Liddell and Forrest Griffin, among other trailblazers.
But, when company president Dana White goes to bat for a fighter/friend on national television (watch video here), and ends up getting snakebit because he is not aware of the full story, it's got to burn pretty bad.
For everything you need to know about this still-dveloping story from start to finish, be sure to hit up our comprehensive story stream right here -- it's got everything you need and much, much more.