Vitor Belfort has had an amazing career comprised of thrilling performances, stunning knockouts and substance abuse, which he’s parlayed into an improbable title shot at 36 years of age and after 17 competitive years in the sport. And for that proposed title shot, which will be against incumbent champ Chris Weidman at a UFC whose date has yet to be determined but will likely take place in Las Vegas, N.V., the Brazilian plans to do what he does best when he sets foot in the cage: testosterone replacement therapy.
Belfort, you see, hasn’t fought in the United States since 2011, and as a result hasn’t been subjected to the same level of hormonal scrutiny he’d face in places with actual athletic commissions. But looking like a caricature of a fighter and fighting like an anime version of what some Tokyo University of the Arts student would doodle in his spare time comes with limitations, and it was assumed that Belfort was going to have to ease up on the artificial testosterone injections if he was going to be able to get a match-up with the all-natural all-American in America. Not so, though!
Said Ariel Helwani on UFC Tonight last night: “I spoke with Vitor yesterday and he said he’s on TRT and that his doctors said he has to be on it. This has been prescribed and he’s planning on applying to be on a TUE for the next fight.”
Weidman doesn’t seem to be bothered by the prospect of having to face a Vitor Belfort that is more chemical than human (a sentiment shared by members of his camp as well – they’re confident he’ll beat Belfort anyway). But it should certainly bother the fans. Because if Weidman loses, so what? He lost to someone on the Super Soldier Serum. And if he wins, he just beat some ‘roided-out pile of bad choices and needles marks.
No, there’s a place for people like Belfort, and it’s not where commissions screen fighters for elevated testosterone throughout their training camps. Belfort’s place is in the wilds of Brazil, where they don’t need a regulated sport as much as they just need a reason for fans to go bonkers over the local guy winning.