Friday, November 26, 2021

Wanderlei Silva Wants To Work For Nevada Athletic Commission

Wanderlei Silva has become synonymous with his YouTube videos in the last year r so. Usually, there’s mood lighting and loud music and often he’s yelling at you. His newest video is out, and it’s more subdued than most have been. You can watch it above, but if you just want the key quotes, read on.

Silva actually wants to work for the commission:

This commission should have a professional athlete working there. I am available to work together with the commission to create clear laws that give the athletes the proper respect. The athletes deserve more respect.

On the Nevada Athletic Commission in light of them giving Nick Diaz a five year suspension for a questionable marijuana test failure:

The NSAC has made so many mistake. It shouldn’t be allowed to punish someone just like that. Especially for such a long time. That practically ends a fighter’s career. It’s very cloudy and unclear. One guy gets one year, the other gets two years. I had to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. I’m spending a lot of money with lawyers to defend myself. I’ve never tested positive for anything. I was always a clean fighter and they want to ban me from the sport. How does that work?

For what it’s worth:

1. Silva fled from a drug test (which is always considered equivalent to a failure) and later admitted to taking a banned diuretic. He claimed the diuretic was being used to reduce swelling in his hand from an injury, not as a masking agent. His appeal was successful because he was banned for life. On that note…

2. His appeal was in Nevada State Supreme Court, not the United States Supreme Court.

Silva also voiced his opinion on the USADA ban on I.V. rehydration after weigh-ins, though it seems like he thinks it’s a NAC rule:

Another law that was approved now that does not help athletes in any way [is that] now athletes are not allowed to use an IV, Do you know what’s the impact of this law? The brain damage caused by each hit will be much worse than if you were properly hydrated. The IV has no anabolic effects. These are not laws to actually protect and support athletes. This is part of all the oppression suffered by athletes. We are being crushed in so many ways that we’re realizing that if we don’t unite we will be finished.

He’s not wrong on the facts here. Still, the WADA code that USADA abides by bans I.V. rehydration because it can be used to mask banned substances, mess with their “biological passport” testing, and promotes excessive weight cutting. The concern that Silva and many others have is that the last one will make the sport sport dangerous because fighters will cut the same amount of weight, rehydrate orally, and come into a fight less hydrated. Dehydration also temporarily reduces levels of fluid around the brain, and better hydration helps, though the fluid doesn’t fully replenish in the day between weigh-ins and the fights regardless.

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