After failing his second drug test, middleweight Ricardo Abreu has retired from the sport.
It was revealed on Wednesday that Abreu failed another drug test as he is currently serving a two-year for failing a test last June.
How does a fighter fail another test considering he is already suspended?
“Nothing happened overnight,” Abreu told MMA Fighting. “I had symptoms of depression for a long time, but I didn’t know about it. I had a lot of changes in my life, leaving Las Vegas, where I had the support of Wanderlei Silva and his lovely family for a long time, to live and train in California. I got a sponsor while living in California so I could finally stop teaching and focus on training and fighting only and still pay my bills. That’s what I wanted.
“Living in California was too expensive, though, and since the sponsorship money was coming from Brazil, the crisis there impacted everything,” he continued. “I had a fight in New Orleans and lost a close split decision. After that, I decided to move to Albuquerque, which was cheaper to live than Los Angeles, and train at Jackson’s. But the crisis in Brazil just got worse, and my sponsor notified me that they couldn’t sponsor me anymore because of it. That was right after the Reebok deal with the UFC.
“You make a living with sponsors, not with the purse the UFC pays you. Sometimes the money you make through sponsors is bigger than the fight itself. But it doesn’t make sense to sponsor a fighter if he can’t use your brand in the UFC. I understand them. I’m not criticizing the UFC. I love the company, it’s one of the biggest companies in the world, but that was the reality. That’s what happened.”
While he was getting treatment for the matter, Abreu didn’t reveal the what medicine he was taking and feels he is making the right decision.
“I never considered fighting in the UFC during the treatment because I would need clearance from my doctor after the depression, and USADA came to test me,” Abreu said. “I told them I was under treatment, and they tested me. I didn’t even ask to test the B sample because I knew what was going on since the beginning. I never blamed tainted meat, tainted anything. And they showed up a few weeks ago to test me again, and it’s obvious that some traces of the medication would still be in my body.”
“I never hid this from anyone,” he continued. “I think that they releasing this now, that I failed another test last year, is a misconception of what is really going on with my life. People will see me as a cheater, but it’s not the case. I’ve got to a point where my body doesn’t produce the things I need.”
“This retirement is to prove that this is my focus,” Abreu said. “Feeling better, living with my family and friends, enjoying life, having energy to play with my kids, that’s what matters to me. Unfortunately, I can’t get a medical license from the UFC to get treatment, so this happened. But now I have time to take care of myself and be happy. Life is good.”