Vitor Belfort is back and he's not very happy right now.
Appearing at the 2014 Arnold Classic Brasil (an event that features bodybuilding, combat sports and much more), the former light heavyweight champ spoke with MMAFighting.com's Guilherme Cruz about his standing with the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
"I did all the tests that Nevada requires," he said. "I did it on my own, and I passed them all. There is nothing in my system anymore. ... Since they canceled (Weidman vs. Machida) in May, there is nothing else to do. Give me what is mine."
Belfort looked downright fearsome in 2013, posting back-to-back-to-back head-kick knockouts over Michael Bisping, Luke Rockhold and Dan Henderson.
However, his career resurgence was mired by his use of testosterone replacement therapy (TRT), a controversial treatment that allowed people competing in combat sports to inject themselves with artificial testosterone. The UFC's proactive approach to ensuring Belfort himself could continue the treatment when American athletic commissions indicated they might not allow it was also questioned.
Still, the UFC set him up for a middleweight title shot opposite Chris Weidman for UFC 173. When the Nevada State Athletic Commission suddenly banned TRT, however, it started a confusing set of events that ultimately saw Belfort pulled from the card and replaced with Lyoto Machida.
When Weidman suffered a knee injury, the fight with Machida was rescheduled for UFC 175. This has Belfort frustrated, and he claims the UFC pulled him from the UFC 173 fight to ensure he wouldn't fail a drug test from lingering traces of TRT. The six weeks between UFC 173 and UFC 175, theoretically, would have offered him enough time to clean himself out.
That said, Belfort still likely remains in place for a title shot. He isn't concerned over who he may end up facing between Weidman and Machida. Should he wind up being one of history's few two-division UFC champions, though, he is relieved that there will be no "excuses" like what Rockhold and Bisping have said about Belfort since their respective fights.
"Everything was an excuse to my opponents, and they won’t have it anymore," he told Cruz. "It’s the opposite now, they will be at an advantage. (I used) TRT to be at their levels. They will lose now and won’t have any excuses."