Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal was one of Strikeforce's top rising stars, and until recently, it looked like he was headed for a showdown with UFC star Quinton "Rampage" Jackson. One positive steroid test ruined all of that.
It was found that Lawal tested positive for banned substances after his fight with Lorenz Larkin, which he won by KO.
In an article on MMAFighting.com, he admitted that he took a substance that unknowingly contained steroids, hoping that the explanation will help him when he faces the Nevada Athletic State Commission.
It was the worst thing he could have done for himself.
Fans hate excuses and they hate cheaters. When a fighter makes an excuse for cheating it just adds fuel to the fire. For a fighter to say they didn't know what they were putting into their body is ridiculous.
The Internet has made it so even some of the most complex knowledge is easy to find. If Lawal had really wanted to know he could have done a quick search.
Instead in the article, he blames the fact that he want to a Muscle Max chain store and didn't believe steroids could be sold there. If that is true, then Lawal made one of the worst mistakes a fighter can. He is supposed to pay attention to what he puts into his body and not take chances when it could affect his career.
The worst part is that it endangered his opponent and affected Larkin's career. If Lawal hadn't been on steroids, Larkin might have taken the win and established himself in Strikeforce and with MMA fans.
Now he has to heal up and continue on without having suffered a loss or netted a win. Other then a paycheck, Larkin's career is the same as it was before he met Lawal.
But it all comes back to Lawal. He chose not to do the research. Now he is choosing not to acknowledge his mistake and tell fans that he will learn from it.
It's akin to if Lawal had been driving a car and caused an accident because he didn't see the stop sign because a few branches were covering it. If he had really been looking the sign would have been there, but he didn't and caused an accident that harmed both himself and the other driver.
The same thing goes for accidentally using steroids.
It would have been better if he had just admitted to it and said that while he should have known better he would learn in the future.
Fans would have eventually forgiven him and moved on.
Now he just looks like he is covering up his mistakes.
Or that he hasn't learned anything from having made them in the first place.
And the second option might be worse than the first.
Matthew Hemphill writes for the MMA and professional wrestling portion of Bleacher Report. He also hosts a blog elbaexiled.blogspot.com which focuses on books, music, comic books, video games, film, and generally anything that could be related to the realms of nerdom.