Jose Aldo: If proven guilty, Anderson Silva's 2nd drug-test failure diminishes legacy 'a lot'

Jose Aldo has been quick to defend former longtime UFC champion Anderson Silva during many of his career trials and tribulations. He has a difficult time standing by his fellow Brazilian this time, though.Silva (34-8 MMA, 17-4 UFC), the former UFC middleweight champion, was flagged with a potential doping violation from the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency earlier this month, forcing him out of Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 122 headliner in Shanghai. If proven guilty, it would be the second drug-testing infraction of Silva’s career and a critical blow to the legacy of a fighter once argued by many as MMA’s greatest of all time.
Aldo (26-3 MMA, 8-2 UFC), who challenges Max Holloway (18-3 MMA, 14-3 UFC) for the UFC featherweight title Dec. 2 in the UFC 218 main event at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, said he’s trying his hardest to keep an open mind until all the facts are in. However, he can’t help but speculate on how the world will see Silva if the test results are accurate.
“Whether you like it or not, it does diminish it a lot,” Aldo told MMAjunkie on Monday at a UFC 218 media day in Rio de Janeiro. “He’s an idol for us. For those who are in the MMA community, not so much, but for the fans, yes (it hurts his legacy). They have a different view. And he got caught twice. If it were once, we could maybe say something. But twice, it could condemn him to that. It could taint a career that, for me, was one of the best.”
Aldo has watched what has happened to Silva, as well as many other high-profile fighters who have failed drug tests during their careers, and taken away serious lessons to apply to himself. “Scarface” has never tested positive for a banned substance in more than 13 years as a professional fighter, and he said it’s because he’s done his due-diligence.
There was a point when Aldo was viewed as perhaps the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world while he was nearly untouchable in the cage for more than 10 years. He wants history to look kindly on his accomplishments and contributions to the sport, and said that’s more difficult to do with fighters who have drug-testing blemishes on their records.
Aldo claims to be a clean athlete, and whether Silva’s incident was a misunderstanding or because of blatant cheating, he said he never wants to be in the same position.
“I think this taints someone’s entire career,” Aldo said. “Many fans and reporters, people in the MMA community, they now say Anderson was the champion because he was doping all along. This really taints someone’s career. So I try to take every precaution and do everything the right way. Before starting a camp, I e-mail (the World Anti-Doping Agency) and USADA saying everything I’m going to take and then, when they say it’s OK, we start. I think that’s a precaution that not just me, but every athlete should take.”For more on UFC 218, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.







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