While a BJJ PED incident is rocking our community, UFC has their own troubled PED incident to sportwash. With a win at UFC 285, Jon Jones was reinstalled as the Pound for Pound champion of the promotion.
Firas Zahabi is the head coach of TriStar Gym and a BJJ black belt under the Renzo Gracie/John Danaher lineage.
Zahabi cast a shadow of doubt over UFC’s push for Jon Jones to be considered the greatest of all time (GOAT) in MMA.
Jones has been considered by many as the MMA GOAT due to his impressive record and accomplishments in the sport. However, Zahabi points to Jones’ past failed PED tests as a reason why he doesn’t deserve the title. According to Zahabi, failing tests should result in a lifetime ban, especially if the banned substance is a hormone or a PED.
Zahabi said on TriStar channel:
“You can’t fail (tests) and be the GOAT. If you guys ask me, can I put my vote in the hat? If you get caught on a banned substance… if you get caught with a hormone, I think you should be banned for life. It’s irreversible by the way, the University of Toronto they have a study on hormones and PEDs, and the effects or irreversible.”
Zahabi also questions the double standard in MMA when it comes to dealing with those who test positive for PEDs. In cycling, for example, athletes who test positive for PEDs are banned for life and have all their medals taken away.
“Someone answer me this one question, please? Why is it in cycling if you get caught they ban you for life and they take all your medals? Everything you ever did in your career is gone,” Zahabi added.
“Why in MMA you get a slap on the wrist? You get suspended for six months or a year.”
“Why is it in our sport, they don’t ban you for life? Not only that, you get caught and you keep your titles, you keep them all and you are still in the Hall of Fame.”
Much like in BJJ, majority of promotions in MMA don’t test. UFC is the one outlier, but due to their hold over the market it’s quite significant.
Recently members of B team pointed to the fact that a strength bump can have significant adverse effects in BJJ as well. So if the difference between using a PED and not using it could be as significant as a broken limb, why isn’t it frowned upon?
There’s also the question of the Study that Zahabi mentioned. If the advantages are indeed irreversible, what hope is there to compete as a natural, never having gained an advantage?
Holy got introduced to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) during freshman year of college, by her roommate that dropped out shortly after. After training for a few years, she drifted away from the sport and struggled to maintain her fitness and emotional wellbeing. After a personal crisis she came back to the sport and loves to follow the ins and outs of BJJ culture.