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Bisping disappointed by Belfort TRT revelations

ESPN staff
February 9, 2013 « Wenger fears doping scandal will spread to football | Chartbeat test »
Michael Bisping has made his views on TRT very clear © Getty Images
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Michael Bisping has reacted with disappointment to the news that Vitor Belfort was granted a special exemption to undergo testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) prior to their UFC on FX 7 middleweight meeting.

Bisping, aware that a title shot against division champion Anderson Silva was his if he beat Belfort, instead suffered a second round technical knockout loss to the Brazilian - before it was later revealed that Belfort had been given a therapeutic use exemption (TUE) to bolster his testosterone levels using TRT.

With Belfort having tested positive for steroid use back in 2006 - a side-effect of which can be reduced testosterone levels - Bisping, while refusing to use the news as an excuse for his eventual defeat, admitted it was "very disappointing" to hear.

"As I said right after the fight, I lost because I made a mistake and Vitor took advantage of it," Bisping said in a statement. "It sucks. I don't like it, but that was the result. I lost. Bottom line.

"Over the past couple years, and even right before the fight, I have made my views on TRT very, very clear. I don't feel that I need to go into depth about it again right now. All I have to add, about this specific instance, is that it is very disappointing that someone who was caught cheating with testosterone in the past, now gets to use testosterone legally.

"A well known side effect of steroids is that it reduces testosterone, so I don't understand how it would make sense to then grant someone an exemption to then increase testosterone."

TRT is a divisive issue in the UFC, with a number of high-profile fighters having used the treatment - which is legal, when correctly supervised by a doctor - while others have described it as interfering with the natural function of the body.

Bisping, speaking in mid-2012, was strident in his criticism, saying: "It's nonsense. Listen, nature determines that [testosterone levels] and I don't think we should interfere. I think it's cheating very, very well, it's dressed up.

"It's nonsense and I, for one, am very, very against it. I would never ever do that."

He appears unlikely to take the matter any further, however, instead choosing to focus on the long road back to that elusive title shot.

He added: " I am not here to make excuses or cry over spilled milk. I fight in the best organization in the world, the UFC, and am very excited to work and earn a title fight, the right way.

"That process starts by whooping Alan Belcher's ass at UFC 159."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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