Outtakes: Sean Sherk Q&A

By TJ De Santis May 23, 2009
Former UFC lightweight champion Sean Sherk was featured Monday on the front page of Sherdog.com. Here’s some bonus material that wound up on the cutting room floor:

Sherdog: Fans were hard on you following your positive test for Nandrolone. Do you think that situation is behind you?
Sherk: I still think it’s still an issue. Every interview I do, people ask me about it. The fans still say things about it. I have always been open and honest about it. I have nothing to hide. I didn’t do anything wrong. It’s still an issue but not as big as it was in the past. I think it’s always going to be an issue. People are always going to bring it up. It’s always going to be something that I have to deal with.

Sherdog: Is there anything you can do, either in or out of the cage, to really put it to rest?
Sherk: To be honest with you, I still want to take this thing back to the commission again and get my fair trial. When I was going through that trial, they basically changed everything at the last minute and they made my hearing a non-formal hearing rather than a formal hearing, which means that I can’t have witnesses, we can’t take the stand, we can’t have examination and cross examination. There’s no opportunity for me to get all of the facts out there. There’s no opportunity for all of the commissioners on the board to hear the facts before they make their decision. Basically, they just allowed my lawyer to talk for 10 minutes, they allowed the other lawyer to talk for 10 minutes, and they made their decision based on that. None of the facts were able to be presented, so that, to me, was a kick in the nuts. I mean, this is my life, this is my career and you’re seriously, at the last minute, literally two days before the hearing, going to e-mail me and tell me this is an informal hearing and you do not get any witnesses and you cannot cross examine the prosecution? That’s complete bulls--t. That’s like taking someone’s life in your hands and just throwing it in the garbage. I think it was so disrespectful to do something like that. I worked so hard to get where I was at that point in time, and you just throw it in the garbage and make me feel like a piece of s--t. I was angry. I would like to take this thing back in front of the commission again and get an opportunity to properly defend my case. I still want this cleared. I don’t want this hanging over my head forever. I know I didn’t take anything. I know all of the evidence was pointing in my favor. That’s the reason the commission changed their tune two days before the hearing. They didn’t want all of the facts to be presented. They changed it at the last minute, not giving me a fair opportunity to defend myself.

Sherdog: You hired Howard Jacobs, an attorney who specializes in cases like this. Do you wish there had been a better support system in place for you already, maybe like a fighters union?
Sherk: A fighters union wouldn’t be a bad thing. I think we need something that would unite all of us guys. I mean, if one guy or two guys make a stand and fight for our rights, they get kicked to the curb. I’d be for a union. I wouldn’t be against that. I think it would help us in the long run. I mean, every other professional sport has a union. It would only make sense that eventually it would go in that direction.

Sherdog: The steroid situation is probably one of the lowest lows for you in your career. You were also released by the UFC following your loss to Matt Hughes in 2003. What are the lowest and highest points for you in your career?
Sherk: The lowest lows … you just mentioned them both. Getting let go from the UFC after getting beat by Matt Hughes, I thought I had proved a point at that point in time in my career. I thought I had proved that I was one of the best welterweights in the world. I thought I had broken out of that shell and, hitting the mainstream, that I was going to get all of this great stuff. Then I get a phone call two weeks after the loss, and I’m told that I’m fired. That was terrible. Obviously, the false charges that I had to deal with from the commission. It wasn’t only the charges -- being accused of taking steroids was awful -- but it was the way that case was handled. That was almost worse than the charges because I realized almost right away it just wasn’t going to be possible to defend myself properly. I was basically going into a situation where the commission was the judge, the jury and the prosecution. It would have been better if I was on trial for murder. I would have had more rights. That was terrible. That was the worst thing I have ever had to go through. Then obviously the highest high was when I won the [lightweight] belt.

Sherdog: Are you still eating baby food?
Sherk: Yeah, I’ve got a couple of jars right here. All day long, man. It’s easy, it’s fast, clean, it’s healthy, [laughs] … Gerber! Maybe I could try to get sponsored by those guys one of these days. To be honest with you, think about it, babies eat baby food for the first year of their lives and then move on to solid food. I’ve been eating baby food for years. I’ve probably eaten more baby food in my lifetime than any baby out there. Ideally, wouldn’t you want to sponsor me if you were a manufacturer of baby food? If you were Gerber wouldn’t you want to sponsor Sean Sherk? You get your name on my ass, and now you start branding yourself as clean healthy food. Now professional athletes start eating that stuff because they want to be healthy, too. It doesn’t taste bad. Once you get past that you’re drinking your food rather than chewing it, it’s really not any different.

Sherdog: Do you have a favorite, something that when you’re training you think about and say, “Yeah, I am going to have a jar of that tonight when I get home?”
Sherk: I always buy a mixture of stuff. I always buy the sweet potatoes, the carrots, the fruits and the greens. I just grab whatever is on my mind. I’ve got a whole cupboard of it at the house. I grab it, throw it in the truck and it’s always available.
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