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I've been quite vocal in my criticism of Vitor Belfort, mostly because of the infamous TRT thing.
I had a problem with Belfort injecting himself with pure testosterone and then refusing to talk about it when questioned by the media. In fact, Belfort spoke openly of beating up a reporter (the extremely hard-working John Morgan from MMAjunkie.com) when asked about his TRT regimen following his knockout win over Luke Rockhold.
But Belfort has opened up about his need for testosterone since then. And while I still do not believe that Belfort (or anyone else, for that matter) should be on something that amounts to legalized cheating, I do believe that honesty is the best policy, and it appears that Belfort is being honest.
With that opening statement out of the way, let me make another: Vitor Belfort is putting together a banner year, and he deserves the No. 2 slot on this list.
With highlight-reel knockout wins over top contenders Michael Bisping and Luke Rockhold, Belfort has re-established himself as a middleweight title challenger in the UFC.
It wasn't just that Belfort beat Bisping and Rockhold; it was the way he did it. Belfort used a second-round knockout over Bisping and a first-round wheel kick over Rockhold to put himself back in the conversation. And with Anderson Silva's loss to Chris Weidman at UFC 162, Belfort suddenly finds himself in the catbird seat in the division—particularly if Weidman defeats Silva a second time next February.
I'd like to see him do it without TRT, but that may not be an option any more. So long as Belfort is randomly tested by the UFC during training camp and keeps his testosterone levels in the normal range, he's gaining no real advantage by taking it.
If he fails a PED test, I'll be singing an entirely different tune. But for now, Belfort deserves his place.