Cung Le wants an apology from the UFC. | James Goyder/Sherdog.com
Not surprisingly, Cung Le is pleased with the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s decision to rescind his year-long suspension after the fighter tested positive for an excess level of HGH following his fight against Michael Bisping on Aug. 23.
The UFC recently issued a release stating that Le’s elevated HGH level alone did not necessarily indicate that he took performance enhancing drugs prior to his loss to Bisping at UFC Fight Night in Macau. The suspension was lifted due to a lack of conclusive laboratory results.
However, Le feels that the Las Vegas-based promotion should go a step further. In a statement released through his management, AMR Group, the middleweight explains that the UFC’s release should have also included an apology. Le claims that the initial ruling cause him to “unfairly endure public scrutiny” and caused both he and his family “great pain.”
It is currently unclear if Le, who is 2-2 in the UFC, plans to return to the Octagon. The entirety of Le’s statement can be viewed below:
“I am extremely happy with the UFC’s decision to rescind my suspension. I believe the issues raised in regards to the testing procedures as well as the manner in which the results were determined by the UFC clearly support my assertion that I did not use any performance enhancing drugs. I am also happy to take away the fact that the UFC has decided to make the proper changes in their testing procedures which will now ensure that no athlete will ever have to endure the same hardship.
While I feel vindicated in this matter, the UFC’s press release does little in the way of an apology of which I believe I am rightly owed after unfairly enduring the public’s scrutiny. Their decision to announce me as a user of performance enhancing drugs with little thought to the accuracy of the testing or proper procedures has caused my family and I great pain; that we have now come to know was completely unnecessary had the proper care been taken to ensure my test results were in fact valid proof of impropriety.
I would like to thank all of the people who supported me throughout this extremely trying time; the people and fans who have always supported me and also the people who reserved judgement until all of the facts of this matter were disclosed. I would also like to thank my MMA Manager Gary Ibarra of the AMR Group and their attorney Steve Pacitti for their tireless work to prove my innocence, my wife and children for standing by me all the way and the multitude of journalists and fans who refused to allow this wrong to go unchecked."
Additionally, Le’s management released a statement on the situation:
The AMR Group is also extremely happy with the UFC’s decision to avoid arbitration and rescind their 12 month suspension of Cung Le. The evidence of my client’s innocence was overwhelming in this instance and the UFC’s decision to forego any further action and exonerate him is proof positive of that. We hope that my client will not now forever be associated with illegal doping especially now that he has been completely cleared of any wrongdoing. Regardless of the UFC’s decision, we are left to wonder if this whole matter should have ever happened at all but we do now know several things for certain: 1) my client did not take any performance enhancing drugs, 2) we questioned the propriety of the testing procedures before the UFC announced their initial suspension; 3) sports doping tests should be left to impartial third party experts, and 4) the UFC should have confirmed and evaluated my client's test results before dispensing discipline and making inaccurate statements that could permanently tarnish Cung's previously pristine reputation.
The absence of a formal apology, in light of the recent “medical advice” the UFC received, which prompted them to lift his suspension, is outrageous. Moreover, the insinuation that my client will not be disciplined due to “the [mere] lack of conclusive laboratory results”, is a clear attempt to deflect responsibility and cloud my client's innocence, when, in fact, the mistakes that were made resulted solely from the UFC's reckless and premature actions and decisions.