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Archive for  November 2015

Tuesday 10, Nov 2015

Georges St-Pierre Says Return Is Possible Soon

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Georges St-Pierre, a former three-time Welterweight Champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, has hinted a return to the UFC. The Canadian semi-retired mixed martial artist is going to attend a training camp for six weeks before he makes his decision on whether to fight or retire.

GSP has been training at the Renzo Gracie academy with eminent grapplers like Gary Tonon and others. He also spent a few days in LA visiting Freddie Roach’s gym. His long-time coach Firas Zahabi has also hinted at a potential return. Zahabi said Georges will beat anybody if he prepares with a training camp and added he thinks his star student has lots of fighting left.

St-Pierre decided to vacate the 170 lbs. title after he defeated Johny Hendricks in a controversial split decision in 2013. In September this year, UFC president Dana White said he believes GSP will never return and also remarked GSP is rich and is living the good life. White said you have to be hungry in this sport and want to be a world champion and Georges St-Pierre has already accomplished that and he does not see GSP ever coming back.

Georges St-Pierre recently pledged public support for longstanding rival Nick Diaz who bas banned for five years and heavily fined after he tested positive for marijuana. GSP remarked the ban imposed on Diaz was questionable, at the very least and also remarked the ban is huge especially when you think about Anderson Silva and other guys who were doping and received a lighter suspension compared to Nick.

 GSP also commented that he believes the Nevada State Athletic Commission wanted to make an example out of him to send a message because Nick is a colorful character who talks a lot and makes a lot of noise. Georges St-Pierre also said that fighters who have failed drug tests for marijuana should be treated differently than those who use anabolic steroids and other performance enhancers. The former three-time Welterweight Champion said marijuana could help someone that suffers from anxiety, but it won’t make you stronger or more powerful and he does not believe it should be judged upon so severely.

St-Pierre, considered by many as one of the greatest MMA fighters of all time, was ranked as the #1 welterweight in the world for many years by Sherdog and several other publications. Born on 19 May 1981 in Quebec, Georges St-Pierre took up Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, wrestling, and boxing when he was 16. He received a black belt in Kyokushin before he turned professional at the age of 21. The MMA fighter made his UFC debut at UFC 46 and defeated highly ranked Karo Parisyan by unanimous decision in his first fight and then went on to defeat Jay Hieron at UFC 48 via technical knockout in only 1:42 of the first round. GSP defeated former UFC welterweight champion B.J. Penn at UFC 58 to become the No. 1 contender for the UFC welterweight title and won the match by split decision.

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Sunday 08, Nov 2015

WADA To Publish Independent Report Into Doping In Sport

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The World Anti-Doping Agency is set to release its findings on widespread allegations that have sent tremors over the last year.

WADA’s independent commission will make a report public on Monday that is prompted by a 2014 documentary by a German broadcaster. This documentary alleged widespread cheating and doping among athletes, coaches, and officials from Russia. The World Anti-Doping Agency is also looking into an August 2015 report that included leaked information from database of the International Association of Athletics Federation, which included tests that allegedly revealed suspicious results for many Olympic and world championship medalists.

Athletics has come under the scanner, especially after IAAF President Lamine Diack was investigated over an alleged payment of more than one million euros to cover up doping offences by Russian athletes.

A prosecutor from the Parquet National Financier (PNF), which handles financial prosecutions in France, confirmed that the former IAAF President is being investigated. Diack and his adviser Habib Cisse have been formally interviewed and Gabriel Dolle, the IAAF’s anti-doping director, has been taken into custody.

The 82-year-old Senegalese, who was IAAF president from 1999 until 2015, is suspected of corruption and money-laundering. Diack is suspected to have taken money allegedly to hide positive doping tests. Diack was arrested and released on £350,000 bail and was ordered to surrender his passport.

The PNF prosecutor added the investigations included a probe into bribery allegations that Diack received more than one million euros to cover up positive drugs tests. A statement from the IAAF confirmed French police officers paid a visit to the IAAF headquarters in Monaco and took documents. IAAF president Sebastian Coe, who took over in August from Diack, was at the office at the time and volunteered to speak to the investigators.

Papa Massata Diack, Diack’s son, stepped down from his role as a marketing consultant to the IAAF and the head of Russia’s athletics federation, Valentin Balakhnichev resigned from his role as IAAF treasurer. Dolle, the director of the IAAF medical and anti-doping department, left the federation after he was questioned by its ethics commission. This all was after it was claimed by German broadcaster ARD that a number of positive dope tests involving Russian athletes had been concealed by officials from the IAAF. The leaked data published in August revealed that a third of all medals in endurance events at World Championships and Olympics between 2001 and 2012 had been won by athletes who recorded suspicious tests.

A statement was released by the IAAF in which it was said that the world governing body of athletics confirms that a French police investigation has commenced that originated from separate ongoing investigations by the independent commission of WADA and the IAAF’s own independent Ethics Commission into allegations surrounding its anti-doping rules and regulations.

WADA released a statement and confirmed that the investigations had been prompted by its information. The statement read the World Anti-Doping Agency is aware of the ongoing criminal investigations relating to sport officials and allegations of corruption and money-laundering, as announced by the French authorities and added these investigations are a result of information passed on by WADA’s Independent Commission (IC) to the relevant authorities.

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Friday 06, Nov 2015

Ex-IAAF President Implicated In Bribery And Doping Scandal

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Former IAAF president Lamine Diack has been charged with corruption linked to covering up doping cases by French authorities. Diack was charged with “passive corruption” and money-laundering. This news came on the day it was revealed that offices of athletics’ governing body in Monaco were raided by French police and caches of documents were taken away.

Diack stepped down after 16 years in charge of track and field’s governing body. The ex-long jumper is now subjected to investigation that concerns money movements and goes beyond doping. The 82-year-old Senegalese who recently gave up as International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) president in August was charged on Monday in Paris. Diack’s advisor, Habib Cisse, a lawyer, was also charged. It is believed that Gabriel Dollé, the former director of its medical and anti-doping department and a doctor associated with the anti-doping measures of the federation, was being questioned in custody. Diack and Cisse were released on bail. Dollé had left the world governing body after he was questioned by the IAAF Ethics Commission.

The French judicial inquiry follows information received from the World Anti-Doping Agency and is being conducted by French financial prosecutors. Diack is accused of taking at least €200,000 (£141,000) from Russia Athletics for covering up positive doping tests. The French police investigation is believed to center on the case of Russian marathon runner Liliya Shobukhova who alleged few months back that two members of the Russian Athletics Federation extorted $450,000 from her in return for covering up a positive test.

The Parquet National Financier (PNF), the office that handles financial prosecutions in France, said its probe started when WADA alerted it to acts of corruption and laundering involving members of the International Association of Athletics Federations.

Sebastian Coe, the new President of IAAF, was at the federation’s headquarters at the time of the police raid. Coe volunteered himself to answer any questions. In a statement, the IAAF said it confirms that, emanating from separate ongoing investigations by WADA’s independent commission and the IAAF’s own independent ethics commission into allegations surrounding its anti-doping rules and regulations, a French police investigation has now commenced. It was added that the International Association of Athletics Federations Is fully cooperating with all investigations as it has been from the beginning of the process and also disclosed that police, as part of the French investigation, visited the IAAF HQ offices to carry out interviews and to access documentation.

Pape Massata Diack, the son of Lamine, was forced to render his resignation as a marketing executive with the world governing body of athletics after he was accused of involvement in corruption aimed at covering up doping scandals in Russia. Valentin Balakhnishev, IAAF treasure and president of the Russian Federation, was also implicated and stripped of his functions by athletics’ governing body.

Nikita Kamaev of Russia’s anti-doping agency said his organization would provide every kind of assistance required by French investigators if contacted. Russian sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said the athletics federation of his country had cleaned up its act. Mutko added we have already said that there were problems with our federation, but the old management is no longer working there. He also added you have to understand that now there are a lot of criminal cases around the world, and it is not an easy situation to be in.

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Wednesday 04, Nov 2015

Drugs Cheats Should Be Jailed, Says British Sporting Hero

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Jonathan Edwards, who has held the men’s triple jump world record since 1995, has remarked doping in athletics is similar to fraud. The British sporting hero also said drug cheats should be jailed as it would be “a good deterrent” for would-be cheats.

Edwards said he believes the sport in “real crisis” can be saved by his compatriot Sebastian Coe from further decline after athletics was engulfed by a series of doping convictions and allegations. Edwards said he knows Sebastian very well and he is absolutely the right person to do the job. He remarked Coe has inherited the sport in a real crisis, with all the recent doping allegations and Coe has to establish the credibility of the sport and the credibility of the doping activities that the IAAF have carried out. The retired triple jumper also said Coe knows he has a very tough job ahead of him and he is under no illusions. The men’s triple jump world record added Coe has had amazing credibility as an athlete, as a sports administrator for what he did at London 2012 and he is very good at gathering talented people around him.

In August, Sebastian Coe was appointed as President of the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF). Coe immediately vowed to address the sullied image of athletics through the implementation of independent anti-doping units.

The 49-year-old, who won a host of gold medals including at the 2000 Olympics and the 1995 and 2001 World Championships, said he thinks the criminalization of doping in sport should be very seriously looked at. Edwards added he does not see how doping is different to fraud in business and remarked athletics is big business now. However, Edwards remarked he understands that, legally, there are difficulties with implementation, because of different laws across continents and across countries but he do thinks it is something that should be given serious consideration.

The former Olympic, World, Commonwealth, and European champion admitted the ambitious plan of the IAAF President to create an independent doping strategy for avoiding perceived conflicts of interest may be hamstrung by a lack of funding. Edwards added UK Anti-Doping is under threat of 20 per cent budget cuts and they have been warned, this is the reality of the world we are living in at the moment. Edwards, a member of the London Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games for the 2012 games, said money is not as free-flowing as it used to be but everyone has to understand that, money spent on anti-doping in one sense is not going towards building up the sport, but if you lose the credibility in the eyes of the public, then you’ve lost the sport.

Edwards added he is in favor of Britain trying to emulate France, Italy, and Australia by criminalizing the use of substances that are prohibited under the World Anti-Doping Code. In August, Lord Colin Moynihan, the former sports minister and chairman of the British Olympic Association, suggested this idea that is presently under review.

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Monday 02, Nov 2015

Anderson Silva Is A “Coward”, Says Ben Rothwell

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Top-ranked UFC heavyweight contender Ben Rothwell has called Anderson Silva a “coward” for not admitting his guilt after receiving a 12 month suspension from the Nevada Athletic Commission for using anabolic androgenic steroids.

Rothwell said Anderson Silva destroyed his legacy not because he was busted but because he continually denied everything to show just what a coward he is. Ben Rothwell added he has no respect for Silva and added Silva is a cheat and is not a man.

Silva, the Brazilian mixed martial artist and former UFC Middleweight Champion, holds the longest title defense streak in UFC history. He tested positive for Drostanolone and Androstane after his fight against Nick Diaz at UFC 183. Silva beat Diaz via unanimous decision but the win was overturned to no contest after his use of performance enhancing drugs. The former middleweight champion pleaded his innocence and said he tested positive because of a mysterious sexually enhancing “blue vial” that he acquired from a friend in Thailand.

In 2013, Ben Rothwell himself tested positive for elevated levels of Testosterone. He was suspended for a period of nine months but took full responsibility for his actions and vowed to never cheat again.

In another development, Michael Bisping said he is no longer interested in Anderson Silva. Bisping (27-7 MMA, 17-7 UFC) said the drug test failure of Silva has changed his desire to fight against Silva. Bisping added he believes that a person does not make a decision to try a new thing called steroids at the age of 39 and Silva must have been on the juice the whole time. Bisping, who is arguably the most famous fighter to have never received a UFC title shot, said he is not sure if he would accept a fight with the man who is considered by many as one of the greatest of all time.

Bisping added nobody expected Anderson Silva to test positive and he has always been a fantastic fighter, always been a fan favorite. The English mixed martial artist who competes in the middleweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship added it is ridiculous that Anderson’s positive test was the first time he was ever tested out of competition and he failed it. Bisping also remarked Silva came up with every excuse under the sun, including Viagra, and he looked the fool and added he wouldn’t fight Silva or anyone else that has a history of taking steroids.

Silva was recently criticized for laughing when his team made fun of Steven Seagal, action movie star and former mentor of Anderson. Seagal has always been a figure of ridicule within the MMA community. The 63-year-old started working with Silva and Lyoto Machida in 2010 and served as a mentor and teacher to the former UFC champions. However, Seagal has been absent from the mixed martial arts sphere since he started taking credit for some of their techniques. Anderson Silva started to distance himself from Seagal after he took praise for the front kick Silva used to knockout Vitor Belfort at UFC 126.

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