Gilbert Melendez has been hit with a one year suspension from the sport after failing a post-fight drugs test following his UFC 188 decision loss to Eddie Alvarez in Mexico last month.
The 33 year-old Melendez is reported to have tested positive for exogenous origin of testosterone metabolites and in a statement he takes full responsibility for his failed test while stressing that he wasn’t taking injections.
“Regrettably, I tested positive in my post fight urine sample for UFC 188,” a statement from Melendez on the UFC’s official site reads. “I did not inject anything, but I am responsible and accept the consequences for the results. I will make sure I am better educated about the products I use and their implications. Going forward I will ensure no products I use will contain banned substances. I am sincerely apologetic to everyone who supports me, including my fans, sponsors and the UFC. I value your trust and respect and will do everything in my power to keep it.”
It’s surprising to see the former Strikeforce champion in this predicament as he’s never failed a test before and wasn’t someone that was even rumored to potentially be using PED’s. However, since UFC superstar Anderson Silva tested positive for steroids earlier in the year it’s become disappointingly clear that anything is possible and nobody is above suspicion.
Melendez can count himself lucky that he wasn’t caught a month later as the UFC’s strict new drugs policy came into force in July 1st and would have mean that he’d have been facing a two year suspension as a first time offender.
As a result of ‘El Nino’s’ suspension the UFC will again have to seek out a new opponent to face Al IAquinta at UFC Fight Night 72 on July 15th.