Per USADA, Ben Rothwell has accepted a two-year sanction for a pair of failed drug tests back in February 2017. Rothwell attempted to get a TUE for testosterone, but was denied.— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) April 6, 2018
The Ultimate Fighting Championship’s heavyweight division has just lost one of its stalwarts.
Ben Rothwell has been given a two-year ban for violating the UFC’s anti-doping policy. Rothwell’s ban comes on the heels of allegedly failing two out-of-competition tests from USADA in early 2017. Rothwell’s failure was triggered by the alleged presence of an anabolic androgenic steroid of exogenous origin.
Following notification of his USADA violation, Rothwell released a statement:
“With the recent news received from USADA I would like to take this time to let everyone know, I have been under the care of a physician and trying to overcome a medical illness. I would appreciate the chance to show that I have not cheated nor did I intended (sic) to cheat. Please hold your opinions of me until all the facts are out. I appreciate everyone's support as I go through the process with usada.”
With this news as it stands, Rothwell will be unable to step back into the cage until 2019 at the earliest.
Prior to being removed due to his USADA violation, Rothwell was ranked at No. 5 in the official UFC rankings and won 4 of his last 5 fights, with his lone loss coming against Junior dos Santos, who himself is currently facing repercussions for a potential doping violation.