The new era has begun, MMA fans.
Remember the days where your favorite fighters were obligated to undergo a nominal amount of testing for Performance Enhancing Drugs, but then, it seems nothing much was done with them?
For example, back in 2008, when Chris Leben tested positive for the steroid stanozolol — and was only suspended nine months?
Bellator middleweight Alexander Shlemenko has been suspended for three years by the California State Athletic Commission, after failing drug tests following his bout with Melvin Manhoef.
Shlemenko, a former middleweight champion, was found to have the steroid oxandrolone and oxandrolone metabolites in his system, as well as a testosterone-to-epitestosterone (T/E) ratio of 50-1. The CSAC’s legal limit is 4-1.
The native of Omsk, Russia was also fined $10,000.
It’s the first big-name casualty since the CSAC adopted harsher penalties for athletes who are caught using banned substances — and the harshest to date, as well.
“Our job here is to protect the fighters, period,” said CSAC commissioner John Frierson during a hearing today in Los Angeles, as quoted by MMA Junkie. “The guy that he knocked out, he could have killed him.”
Shlemenko’s bout with Manhoef took place February 13 at Bellator 133 in Fresno, CA. It was Shlemenko’s record fifteenth appearance for Bellator. His knockout victory, which was later overturned and ruled a no-contest, also broke a promotional record for wins.
The 31 year old Shlemenko, who enjoyed a twelve fight winning streak from 2011 to 2014, holds a record of 51-9 in MMA, with one no contest.