It’s not going to cloud the joy of witnessing the birth of his first child on Wednesday. And he’ll still take to heart all of the laudatory sendoffs that came flowing his way after he announced his retirement from fighting earlier in the week.
But the week didn’t end so glowingly for Stephan Bonnar.
On Friday, the UFC revealed that the light heavyweight was one of two fighters to test positive for banned substances at UFC 153 three weeks ago in Rio de Janeiro. Bonnar, who lost to Anderson Silva in the main event, was found to have the anabolic steroid Drostanolone in his system, SI.com confirmed with Marc Ratner, the fight promotion’s vice president of regulatory affairs. Ratner also confirmed that heavyweight Dave Herman, a loser to Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at the Oct. 13 event, tested positive for marijuana metabolites.
Because there is no athletic commission in Brazil, the tests were conducted by the UFC. According to a story at MMAjunkie.com, which first reported on the failed drug tests, Ratner expects to issue suspensions next week.
It could be a moot exercise. The 35-year-old Bonnar, best known for his rock ’em, sock ’em robots slugfest with Forrest Griffin in the first-season finale of The Ultimate Fighter – a 2005 bout widely credited with boosting the popularity of the UFC and the sport of MMA in general — is done fighting. He took to Twitter on Wednesday with this: “Huge thanks to every UFC fan out there! All I ever wanted was to bring ya’ll some fun. Hope you were entertained. Peace, love & violence!”
As for Herman, the 28-year-old nicknamed “Pee Wee” presumably plans on continuing to fight, but his next big adventure could very well take place outside the UFC. The second-round submission to Nogueiro was his third straight defeat. Since knocking out John-Olav Einemo in his debut with the promotion in June 2011, he’s been finished by Stefan Struve (TKO), Roy Nelson (KO) and Big Nog.
The failed drug test was not a first for either fighter. Bonnar tested positive for the anabolic steroid Boldenone following a 2006 loss in a rematch with Griffin and served a nine-month suspension levied by the Nevada Athletic Commission. Herman’s other failed test was just a year ago and revealed the same substance. After the pre-fight screening resulted in the cancellation of a UFC 136 fight with Mike Russow, Herman told MMAfighting.com: “I do not smoke marijuana. I can’t say I’m not around it. I live in California. Pretty much everyone out here smokes weed. Maybe I need to pick my friends a little better. I don’t know.”
– Jeff Wagenheim