Fabricio Werdum: I would never “snitch” on anyone else to save my own skin
In July of 2017, at UFC 214, Jon Jones (22-1-1) finally completed his comeback, knocking out his rival Daniel Cormier (21-1-1) and recapturing the UFC light heavyweight title he never lost inside the cage. It was supposed to be a new beginning for Jones, a chance to restart one of the most successful careers in MMA history. Instead, it proved more of the same as Jones once again failed a USADA drug test and had his win overturned to a No Contest. Jones was looking at a possible four-year suspension. But last week, Jones was finally given his punishment - a 15-month suspension retroactive to July of 2017. It was a significantly lighter suspension than most had anticipated.
USADA didn’t just hand Jones a softball suspension out of the goodness of their hearts though: Jones received a lesser punishment by availing himself of Article 10.6.1.1 in the UFC’s anti-doping policy which essentially states that a fighter can get a reduced suspension if he or she provides substantial information and cooperation in another case that can lead to anti-doping sanctions or even criminal charges. Jones appears to be the first fighter to have taken advantage of the rule (though his Jones’ manager denies that Jones ratted anyone out to get a lesser suspension) but he wasn’t the first to be offered it.
Last month, Fabricio Werdum (23-8-1) was suspended by USADA for two years for failing an out-of-competition drug test in April. Werdum apparently got the same offer as Jones, but the former heavyweight champion recently told Combate he would never “snitch” on anyone else to save his own skin.
“What surprised me the most was at the end of the interview, it was something that I found absurd. They said, ‘Werdum, here’s the thing: If you tell on someone …’ It was what you could call plea bargain. ‘Werdum, if you tell on someone’ – using the slang if you’re a snitch – ‘we’ll shorten your suspension. Because you’re going to have to pay something. Even if we find the substance in any of the products we test, even if we find it, you’ll have to pay something." - Werdum said.
"For the guy to make me an offer like that, to snitch on someone, that goes against my principles. I can’t tell on someone. Even if I knew, I wouldn’t do it. How am I going to snitch on someone to make it better for me, to lower my suspension or whatever?”
Werdum tested positive for the anabolic steroid trenbolone and its metabolite epitrenbolone in an out-of-competition urine screening conducted on April 25 in advance of his scheduled UFC Moscow fight against Aleksei Oleinik. His refusal to “snitch” on anyone else didn’t do him any favors with USADA who gave him a two-year suspension fating retroactively to May 22 — the date of his provisional suspension — meaning the earliest he will be eligible to compete is on May 22, 2020.