Just days from Lyoto Machida’s UFC On FOX 19 co-main event against Dan Henderson it’s emerged that the Brazilian star has admitted to taking a banned Peformance Enhancing Drug which has resulted in the fight being cancelled.
Machida included the substance 7-keto-DHEA in his declaration form during a pre-fight drug test, claiming to be unaware that it was a banned anabolic agent.
“I’m here to tell you that I was caught by surprise by this news,” Machida said in a statement. “It has been very difficult for me. I’ve trained a lot for this fight. I’ve dedicated a lot of with all my teammates. I want to tell you that I really didn’t know about this substance, so I listed it on my declaration form amongst everything else I was taking. This substance was recently banned in 2016, so I take the blame for not knowing that. I’d like to say I’m really sorry and apologize to my fans, teammates and my family. I always try to play by the book, but unfortunately, this happened.”
Machida is the second former champion to have been caught out by USADA’s strict anti-doping drug policy in the space of a week as Frank Mir tested positive for an oral steroid on the day of his KO loss to Mark Hunt at UFC Fight Night 85 in Australia.
With UFC On FOX 19 taking place on Saturday night there’s just not enough time left for the promotion to bring in a suitable replacement to keep Machida’s opponent Henderson on the card, and so he’ll be now be reassigned to another upcoming card instead.
That means that a woman’s strawweight fight between Rose Namajunas and Tecia Torres will now serve as the co-main event on ‘big’ FOX, while a featured preliminary bout between Cub Swanson and Hacran Dias now bumps up to the four-fight main card which will be headlined by Rashad Evans Vs Glover Teixeira.