Dana White and Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will defend Anderson Silva and give him his right to due process following "The Spider's" shocking positive test for drostanolone and androstane in a UFC 183 pre-fight drug screening.
After nearly 24 hours to let the bitter news simmer, Dana White finally released a statement regarding "The Spider's" failed drug test, and future as the coach of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) Brazil season 4.
"Anderson Silva has been one of the greatest athletes this sport has ever seen. He has had a long and distinguished career in mixed martial arts. In his nine years with the UFC, Anderson has never tested positive for a banned substance. In light of this, we want to ensure that Anderson gets his due process and we will support him during this time. While this process plays out, Anderson will continue in his role as coach of The Ultimate Fighter Brazil. Of course we will continue to monitor the actions of the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
"We fully support the Commission's out-of-competition drug testing program, which we have financed when requested over the past two years. Testing of this nature is important to help keep the sport clean. The director at the laboratory in Salt Lake City has now explained the timing of Anderson's test results and why the Commission and the UFC did not receive the results until February 3, after the fight. Once all the results have been made public and the Nevada State Athletic Commission has rendered its decision, we will respect the process and move forward accordingly."
While this is a carefully articulated response that lacks the frankness we have become accustomed to from the UFC president, it is important to recognize that UFC brass is sticking by Silva's side as this process plays out over the next several months.
It also appears that Silva will continue to coach on TUF Brazil, which some may find shocking. In the end, Silva has long been considered the GOAT of MMA, and is a national hero in Brazil, so it would be wrong for UFC to take the opportunity to learn from "The Spider" away from the TUF contestants.
Even though UFC wants to keep Silva on TUF, there may be some issues if "The Spider" is ultimately given a suspension:
According to that statute, if Silva is suspended by the NSAC for his failed drug tests, it seems that he would not be allowed to coach on TUF, because the show is being filmed in Las Vegas.
Ultimately, this is a wait and see type of deal, but for now UFC is sticking by their greatest champion to ever step foot inside the cage, and the Brazilian fighters looking to learn from Silva will have that opportunity -- for the time being -- on TUF.
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