It was revealed today that Strikeforce light-heavyweight star Muhammed ‘King Mo’ Lawal tested positive for steroids following his January 7th fight with Lorenz Larkin.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission announced that the former 205lb champion had been found to have used the banned substance Drostanalone which is known to be a performance-enhancer.
At this stage Lawal is denying any knowledge of using the illegal steroid and plans to appeal the decision. If unsuccessful he’s likely to be facing a full year out of MMA competition along with a fine and his fight with Larkin being amended to a no-contest ruling.
The news is sure to come as a huge disappointment for the troubled Strikeforce promotion who are already reeling from having their woman’s 145lb champion Cris ‘Cyborg’ Santos suspended for steroid usage at an event in December.
Lawal was widely seen as one of the remaining stars within the promotion that could become a genuine star due to his high level wrestling credentials, heavy hands and outspoken, colorful personality, and an impressive first round KO win over Larkin at the start of the month only further enhanced that impression.
While it had yet to be confirmed it had been anticipated that he was on course for another title shot in 2012, potentially a rematch with Gegard Mousasi who he had previously defeated in 2009 to win the title.
The news is also the second blow in a week for the ‘Blackzillons’ fight team which Lawal is a part of. Another team member Anthony Johnson caused controversy on Friday when he came in his first UFC 142 fight 11lbs overweight, the third time he had failed to make weight in his UFC career. He was then submitted in the first round of his fight and promptly cut from the UFC.