UFC Fight Night 119 Preview

ufc-fn119The UFC is building UFC Fight Night 119 as the return of Lyoto Machida except they leave one major detail out when they talk about the return.

More often than not they build as a simple return after a long time away but in reality, it is a return from an 18-month USADA suspension.

Machida was caught using a supplement banned by USADA that he claims he didn’t realize was on the banned list.

He claimed that he used DHEA to destress but not necessarily as a performance-enhancing substance.

Regardless of his arguments against the suspension, he was handed an 18-month ban from fighting ending his chance at trying to find his way back.

Before the suspension, he hadn’t done a lot losing two fights in a row with his fight against Dan Henderson a chance to return to contention before it was cancelled.

He gets that chance to return to contention now as he takes on Derek Brunson in his return to the octagon.

Although the fight is being built as a comeback fight this main event could be a perfect expression of the generations in the promotion.

Machida is a part of a different generation when things were nowhere near the level they are at right now.

It was a time when there was no major TV deal and where only a couple of fighters were big enough to really get any kind of recognition.

It was also a time when drug testing was far from strict as the commissions were responsible for the testing and often didn’t test for a large number of substances.

That era is over though as the UFC brought in USADA to clean up a sport that had been rumoured to be very dirty with little ways to prove it.

The new testing has certainly had an effect as there are a number of fighters serving suspensions after failing tests.

Even more, fighters are not looking like themselves after USADA was introduced with physiques that are far from the ones that were around before.

A new era is now underway as the UFC is seeing more testing and stricter testing that is exposing more fighters cheating.

It is also exposing more fighters for things that would never have been considered cheating because a new group is in charge.

The UFC has to bend to the banned substance list created and managed by USADA, the same organization that manages testing for Olympic hopefuls.

Some fighters are finding the adjustment difficult because they have so often used substances to assist themselves.

Now they can’t and whether it is the physical issues that not using the drugs has or the mental effect that they have these fighters are struggling to adjust.

Even more than that, fighters are struggling to adjust to a new list of banned substances that some have struggled to figure out when it comes to their supplements.mma-sidebar.fw

The older generation of fighters is finding it tougher and Machida is an expression of that struggle.

After being caught, either purposefully taking a banned substance or struggling to understand it was a banned substance, he makes his return to the new way of doing things and hopefully can make that final adjustment.

He will take on a fighter that has grown up in that environment and has thrived in that environment.

Brunson was riding a five-fight win streak when he took on Robert Whittaker in a chance to move his way into the contender spot.

He lost that fight and his following fight against Anderson Silva putting him in his worst slump ever.

A win against Daniel Kelly ended his slide but he has a lot of work to do before he can climb back to contention in the division.

He hopes to do that against one of the biggest names he has ever faced as added Machida to the win column could be big for him.

He will need to hope that Machida can’t handle fighting without a banned substance although Machida still claims the substance he used was never performance enhancing.

It will be seen this time around as his 18 months off will already provide some rust and if he truly used something to help him it will show.

If he never did and he can shake off the rust he can prove to everyone that he is just as good when he is completely clean as he was in taking the banned substance.

He can prove that the adjustment to the new era is not that difficult for everyone and that he remains one of the best in the world regardless of the era.

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