In a very small window of time, there has been 4 high profile busts for banned substances. All of which were part of out of competition testing. When you look at positive tests in the past, they've all been linked to tests after/before the event. You can always scroll the shit list for a good run down of known cheaters. With out of competition testing seemingly on the rise, how many more will we see popped for PED's? As with any system of detection, you will always have a group breaking away to circumvent that protocol. Lance Armstrong was a perfect example, not only did he achieve an unimaginable level of fame, and respect as the greatest cyclist to ever race, he was also the biggest cheater in the history of competition.
A strong case could be made that MMA doesn't actually want to rid the use of PED's and let me explain why I say that:
1) The ban for drugs is at most 1 year. Which, in my opinion is not long enough. That means that during that year, the fighter can train, get better, fully repair, and be close to 100% for their next fight. Bans should be at LEAST 1 year, this coupled with #2 would be a huge incentive to stay away from PED's.
2) The monetary fines are fairly insignificant, except for this guy. If you want to deter people from cheating, there has to be crippling monetary fines. (Accidental use that can be proved should of course be taken into consideration). I would like to see fines of $50,000 or more for a conclusively positive test.
3) The stigma with drugs seems to be "everyone is doing it, so heck with it."
The reality is that drugs are a part of sport. Like a mole on Ronda's face, it's sadly part of the whole show.
One thing that baffles me however, is that EPO is FINALLY starting to make its way into MMA headlines. But is this just the tip of the iceberg? I really want to believe that's the case, but the truth is that it will be a very scary landscape in the years to come, especially once out of competition testing becomes prioritized. I fear one day that my favorite fighters, guys like Cain, GSP, among others may be one day reading the dreaded apology to the MMA world.
Like OilCheck explaining himself to police after patrolling Taiter's house in his windowless van, things will get worse before they get better.