TUESDAY NEWS DIGEST 4/23: Anderson Silva doesn’t think drug test failures taint his or Jon Jones’ legacies, Dana White Contender Series returning in June, Ponzinibbio calls out Pettis

By Michael Hiscoe, Managing Editor

Feb 9, 2019; Melbourne, Australia; Anderson Silva (blue gloves) before his fight against Israel Adesanya (red gloves) during UFC 234 at Rod Laver Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasmin Frank-USA TODAY Sports

It’s normal

Anderson Silva doesn’t think that the drug test failures on his record should detract from his legacy, or the legacy of other fighters in similar situations, such as Jon Jones. Silva failed a test following his 2015 fight with Nick Diaz, prior to USADA taking over UFC’s testing. That failure went uncontested and he served his one-year suspension. His second suspension was later ruled to be due to a tainted supplement prepared at a Brazilian compounding pharmacy.

Silva and Jones are two of the most successful combatants in MMA history, but many feel their legacies are tainted by their respective drug test failures. Silva thinks, in the end, it shouldn’t matter.

“I don’t think so,” Silva said at a UFC 237 media day (transcribed by MMAFighting). “Jon Jones and I went through difficult situations in this sport, and coming back from all those situations we lived is more than just loving what you (do), you have to be a really special person.”

Both Silva and Jones have had explanations for most of their drug test failures, but it can be hard for fans to separate the performances fans see in the cage and these failures. Silva doesn’t have that problem, and he seems to think Jon Jones is definitely an all-time great.

“He already has a big history in this sport and everything he has done for the sport is unquestionable,” Silva said. “Of course that the things he ended up doing, that even I ended up doing, for decisions, sometimes flaws that we had no control, you end up paying the price for that. But we have to think about the good things. There were more good things than bad things. Jon Jones has my utmost respect and I’m sure he’s the absolute champion of this sport.”

Contender Series returning

Dana White’s Contender Series is returning to UFC Fight Pass and it will remain on Tuesday nights. MMA Junkie is reporting that the show is set to return on June 18 for a ten-week run. The series will also take place at a new venue, the UFC Apex, which is nearing the end of construction near the UFC Performance Institute in Las Vegas. No fights or fighters have been announced for the new season as of yet.

Tuesday Notebook

-Santiago Ponzinibbio put out an Instagram post calling out Anthony Pettis. “There’s no way I’m going to allow you to be ahead of me, come get this beating, you won’t get lucky like last time,” he wrote in the caption.

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