UFC Hall of Famer Michael Bisping had his career trajectory forever altered while facing fighters using performance enhancing drugs so it’s understandable why he’s not going to offer much sympathy when somebody gets busted as a cheater.
The latest example came earlier this week when T.J. Dillashaw was busted for using EPO — a notorious banned substance that cyclists like Lance Armstrong used to help with conditioning and endurance — and he was suspended for two years as a result.
Dillashaw gave up his bantamweight title and now has to sit out until 2021 because of his decision to use EPO and Bisping is the last person in the world who is going to feel bad for him because of the decisions he made.
“I just don’t understand it myself to be honest,” Bisping said on his “Believe You Me” podcast. “If you’re TJ Dillashaw, you’re champion of the world, he was close to being a two weight champion — well maybe not that close — but he had the opportunity. To know you’re going to get tested, when you’re the champion in the UFC, you get tested more than if you’re a prelim fighter. That’s just the way it goes.
“To risk it all. To know that if you’re taking EPO, there’s a two-year ban, tarnishes your legacy as Dan Hardy said on his podcast as a martial artist and as a human being. He’s never going to lose that.”
Bisping points out that fighters who use performance enhancing drugs will have to carry around that stain for the rest of their careers no matter how much success they might find.
He believes that will be the case with Dillashaw, who was previously hailed as arguably the greatest bantamweight fighter in the history of mixed martial arts.
Now everything that Dillashaw has done during his entire career comes under question because he cheated.
“If he comes back after two years and continues to fight, the court of public opinion is not very forgiving and people are going to remember that,” Bisping said. “It’s a really, really bad look. Talk about a fall from grace. He was champion, he gets knocked out by [Henry] Cejudo, refuses to take that loss and now tests positive.
“Listen, I don’t want to kick a man while he’s down too much cause obviously no one regrets this more than TJ Dillashaw but the fact of the matter is when you’re cheating in combat sports, I fail to have sympathy. I really do.”
As previously stated, Bisping has faced more than his fair share of fighters who have been busted for using performance enhancing drugs so it’s tough for him to feel anything but contempt for athletes who continue to attempt to cheat the system.
“I like TJ, he’s a decent guy but I can’t have any sympathy,” Bisping said. “I suffered badly at the hands of performance enhancing drugs and many people have. I say it all the time, we’re not putting balls in a basket here. We’re trying to do damage to our opponents and there’s no honor in cheating like that. There really f—king isn’t.”