Now that former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight titleholder Anderson Silva has been popped for steroids, no mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter is beyond reproach when it comes to speculating who is (or was) on the juice.
That includes Fedor Emelianenko, according to Joe Rogan.
The UFC color commentator suggests "The Last Emperor" may have suffered significant shrinkage after the fall of PRIDE, based solely on physical appearance in between fights against Kazuyuki Fujita (2003) and Anotnio Silva (2011), something that is usually attributed to end of a steroids cycle.
From his weekly podcast:
"Until you know for sure, you can't say you know, but I would imagine the possibility is high. He looked big. Go back and look at what he looked like against Fujita. He was a thick motherfucker. He didn't look anything like he looked when he fought Bigfoot Silva. So what happened? Did he stop lifting weights? That's possible. Or, did he stop taking whatever the fuck he was taking? That's possible too. He's obviously in the pocket of some very wealthy people who would want him to do well at all costs."
Skip to 2:33:35.
Emelianenko, to Rogan's point, is chummy with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Not that any evidence exists to condemn the retired fighter. Watching him compete without equal in PRIDE FC -- only to cross over to Strikeforce and go 1-3 -- was a tough pill to swallow for many longtime MMA fans. But as Brendan Schaub suggested in the above video, sometimes time -- not drugs -- is what causes a combatant to fall.
That, and getting punched in the face for a living.