Say it ain’t so Lyoto! Fresh off a masterful performance against Gegard Mousasi at UFC Fight Night 36, Lyoto Machida has been making the media rounds. When reporters asked him for his thoughts on the upcoming middleweight title fight between Chris Weidman and Vitor Belfort, Machida had a somewhat surprising take. He spoke to Brazilian sports website Na Grade do MMA about Belfort’s chances against Wediman:
“I think this is a tough matchup for both. Anyone can win. I think that in the beginning of the fight Belfort has more chances but Weidman compensates with endurance. He is a young guy with a lot of consciousness.”
And what he thought of “The Phenom’s” TRT use:
“I think it is fair if it is according with the rules. Anyone has his reasons, such as physical, technical or personal. If he (Belfort) really has this condition, there is no problem. I would do. If I was in the rules and to match with everybody else’s condition, there wouldn’t be a problem. People talk a lot of things but he is doing everything straight.”
I think it’s an opinion that many other athletes would parrot, if not necessarily in public. In fact, several fighters have stated before that they have considered TRT usage and might use it at some point in the future, if need dictates. Statements like Machida’s are just a more upfront display of the uphill battle that those seeking to ban it may face from fighters, promoters, and commissions that see it as potentially beneficial to the sport, or just don’t care about it’s use.
There are strong and reasonable opinions on both sides of the issue, especially considering the rigorous demands that MMA training places on an athletes body. For a fighter like Machida, who has seen continued success past the age that most fighters do, perhaps it’s unsurprising that he would have a more pragmatic stance towards athletes who claim to need testosterone to keep fighting.
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