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UFC 187: Vitor Belfort says Reebok sponsorships, like drug testing, should be equal among all fighters

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Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Vitor Belfort recently expressed his concerns with the fact that he was being subjected to drug tests so frequently ahead of his much-anticipated title fight against Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight champion, Chris Weidman.

To the tune of seven times, to be exact, while Weidman has only been tested once as of March 5, 2015, according to "The Phenom."

Of course, "All American" fired back at the Brazilian bomber by saying if he hadn't been popped for banned substances in the past, then maybe the athletic commission wouldn't be so hard on him. But according to Vitor, his past transgressions should have no bearing on it, despite the fact that it was one of the requisites of getting approved for a license.

And during his interview on The MMA Hour, Belfort said it's high time UFC officials start being fair with the way they handle drug testing procedures.

He also drew comparisons with Reebok's new deal with UFC, saying it isn't right that some longtime veterans such as himself are losing out on a lot of money from their regular sponsors and won't be getting reimbursed with a monthly check from Reebok like others select fighters -- and relative newcomers -- like this this one and this one.

His words (via MMA Fighting):

"What I meant is this: the sport is coming towards a big change. Let's talk about uniforms. You see this? (Points to sponsor's shirt.) These are the people that I have a big contract with. Big contract. Lots of money. So now I've gotta go to them and say, ‘Listen, I cannot have you guys inside the cage because we have these guys that sponsor UFC, this big company, that people are only going to be allowed to wear them. And in their mind, they say, ‘Okay. But they will pay you what we pay?' And I say, ‘No, I don't have anything with them.' And we have a lot of discussions -- it's right, it's not right, people like it, people don't like it. But you know, I understand that things have to be done today for the future. So as a businessman, I was talking about (wanting) something to be fair. It's a rule, everybody has to follow the rule. Somebody is going to be on my uniform and they're not going to pay me monthly? It's fair? I have a 19-year career. I don't think it's fair, because some fighters have the privilege to have a contract with this big organization that comes for my sport (Reebok), and they have monthly pay. So the same thing I was talking about with it, I was talking about this thing that I love -- I love to work with the commission in Nevada. They're great people and they're going after everybody. And I said, to be fair, something to be fair has to apply to everyone equal."

Belfort went on to say if UFC wants its new-and-improved plan to attack performance enhancing drugs (PEDs) in MMA, then they need to test every fighter the same amount of times, despite past history.

"That's what I mean. I didn't talk about me. For something to be equal, for the sport to be equal, for the system to work, if you want the system to work, it doesn't matter if I was caught in my seat without a seat belt. I didn't talk about my fight -- as a businessman I was talking about my future. They drug test everybody. 40 percent (of fighters), they fail drug tests. 40. That's a big amount. So now they come with these new rules. These new rules, to work, everybody's guilty until they're tested. So if we want to be right, if someone is going to fight for the belt, it doesn't matter if it's Vitor Belfort or if it's Joe Joseph or if it's Ricardo. It doesn't matter the name. It should be equal. Everybody has to be treated equal. It doesn't matter if this is a rule. I'm just talking about what I think is fair. Not about me. Nothing about me. I could pass it everyday, I don't care. But I'm saying, for something to work, for the future of our sport, everybody has to be treated the same."

For the record, all of Vitor's and Weidman's test(s) have come back negative.

And they will continue to do so, according to a confident Vitor, despite how many more times they ask him to pee in a cup from here until May 23, 2015. That's when 'The Phenom" and "All American" duke it out in the center of the Octagon in Las Vegas, Nevada.

How about it, Maniacs, can you see where Vitor is coming from?