It’s been a bad week in the life of Wanderlei Silva after he was booted from his highly anticpated fight with fellow TUF Brazil 3 coach Chael Sonnen at UFC 175 after failing to take a pre-fight drugs test and not applying for a license to fight in Las Vegas.
According to Sonnen on this week’s edition of UFC Tonight Silva just upped and left his gym in a hurry after an NSAC official turned up to administer a pre-fight drugs test.
UFC President Dana White confirmed that version of events yesterday during a pre-UFC Fight Night 41 media sitdown in Germany, and also claimed that Silva had gone “MIA” for several days afterwards.
For his part, Silva has now released a video explaining his side of the story, claiming it was all just a big misunderstanding.
“He did not show my any identification,” Silva said of the NSAC official who showed up at his gym. “So I told him that I can’t read English very well and I would need my lawyer present to be able to sign any documents. Then I had to leave since it was the day of (Renan) Barao’s (UFC 173) fight, and I was really busy here in Vegas.”
Silva further claimed that he hadn’t applied for a license to fight in Vegas yet because he intended to do that after he returned from the TUF Brazil 3 Finale.
The veteran fighter also believes it’s still possible that all of this can be straightened out and he’ll still be able to fight Sonnen in July as planned.
However, White, who had already made the decision to pull Silva from the fight and draft in Vitor Belfort instead, is clearly not convinced by Silva’s version of events and is not entertaining the idea.
“He can shoot all the videos he wants, he’s in trouble” White said bluntly, confirming that the Brazilian was “done” as far as fighting at UFC 175 goes.
White believes that the 37 year-old is now in “a very bad position” and may struggle to get licensed again in the state of Nevada which puts a big question mark over his future in the sport.
Despite his obvious dislike for Silva, who physically attacked him during their time coaching The Ultimate Fighter in Brazil, Sonnen has actually indicated that he hopes ‘The Axe Murderer’ doesn’t get released by the UFC over this latest incident.
“I don’t want to see Wanderlei fired,” Sonnen told the media during an interview in Brazil ahead of tonight’s TUF Brazil 3 Finale. “I don’t think he will ever fight again. He can’t be trusted again. But he has a family. I know that he has a gym that is a total disaster and I don’t think that he has better options. I have no interest fighting him. I don’t want to face someone that doesn’t want to face me. I don’t do that kind of bullying. If he doesn’t want to fight me, I’ll move on.”
For his part, White said that Silva hasn’t been cut and that his fate will be decided by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.