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Bellator MMA bantamweight Mike Richman and welterweight Fernando Gonzalez both failed post-fight drug tests following this past month’s Bellator 137 event, the California State Athletic Commission today confirmed.

CSAC Executive Director Andy Foster told MMAjunkie that Richman (18-6 MMA, 7-5 BMMA), whom ex-champ Eduardo Dantas (17-4 MMA, 7-1 BMMA) outpointed, was flagged for a performance-enhancing drug while Gonzalez (24-13 MMA, 4-0 BMMA), who submitted Curtis Millender (7-2 MMA, 0-2 BMMA), tested positive for marijuana, his second such offense.

The fighters both competed on Spike TV-televised main card of the May 15 event at Pechanga Resort & Casino in Temecula, Calif.

Foster declined to cite the specific drug for which Richman tested positive, citing privacy laws. A tweet from Sherdog said it was a steroid.

In a prepared statement, a Bellator rep said of the positive tests, “Andy Foster of the California State Athletic Commission has notified us of two positive tests following Bellator 137, Mike Richman for PEDs and Fernando Gonzalez for marijuana.

“We’ve been informed that these fighters will be subject to suspensions and a fines. We here at Bellator stand behind the commission 100 percent in this process and remain committed to keeping MMA clean of substance abuse.”

According to Foster, Richman will be suspended two years and fined $2,500 for the rule infraction. The term is significantly longer than previous suspensions handed out to fighters for positive PED tests, which usually range between nine months and one year. The shift reflects a get-tough stance on banned substances by the commission, which could soon take up to 40 percent of a fighter’s purse if a bill passes the state legislature.

LINK: Bellator’s Mike Richman suspended two years after failed drug test | MMAjunkie

I hope fans are ready to see fighters suspended for years at a time.
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CM Punk’s former on-air manager and longtime real-life friend, WWE performer Paul Heyman, recently spoke about Punk’s mindset heading into his UFC debut.

Heyman appeared on the “Stone Cold Podcast” with WWE Hall Of Famer “Stone Cold” Steve Austin on the WWE Network last week and talked about CM Punk leaving the squared circle to enter the Octagon.

“I don’t think money is the motivating factor in CM Punk’s life whatsoever. I think it’s the challenge to do this,” said Heyman. “This is something he’s been eyeballing since he was a kid, and I think he looks back and he probably regrets not getting into it five or six years earlier, but this was the time to pull the trigger on it.”

Heyman continued, “I think he firmly believes he is either going to step in that Octagon and shock everybody by beating somebody’s ass, or he’s going to get punched in the face and knocked out or tapped out and beat up, and I think that he’s very accepting of the fact that that’s a possibility. He’s man enough to walk in there and take his chances.”

Cont'd here: Paul Heyman Talks About CM Punk's Mindset Heading Into UFC Debut
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With Myles Jury out, lightweight Edson Barboza has a new opponent for next month’s UFC on FOX 16 event.

Jury (15-1 MMA, 6-1 UFC) has been scratched for undisclosed reasons, and undefeated Paul Felder(10-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) has stepped in as a replacement to fight Barboza (15-3 MMA, 9-3 UFC).

UFC officials today announced the change following an initial report from MMASucka.com.

UFC on FOX 16 takes place July 25 at United Center in Chicago. The main card airs on FOX following prelims on FOX Sports 1 and UFC Fight Pass.

Barboza vs. Felder is expected to be part of the main card.

Barboza, who’s ranked No. 11 in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA lightweight rankings, was actually a replacement for No. 3-ranked Pettis (18-3 MMA, 5-2 UFC), who fell off the card with an injury, before No. 9-ranked Jury stepped in. Felder, meanwhile, is unranked.

Barboza, a 29-year-old Brazilian, was close to earning a title shot after putting together a 5-1 run in the UFC. However, in his most recent bout, the knockout artist suffered a decision loss to Michael Johnson.

With Myles Jury out, Edson Barboza gets new UFC on FOX 16 opponent | MMAjunkie
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Originally published here - New York Overhauls MMA Bill as Deadline Looms | Combat Sports Law

As the New York State Assembly struggles to gather the needed votes to pass proposed legislation to legalize professional MMA, the Bill has been overhauled with a view to obtain the needed support. The current text of Bill A02604 can be found here.

MMA journalist Jim Genia, who has provided coverage of these legislative developments that are second to none, hasprovided the following summary of the revamped Bill –

  • Amateur MMA is permitted, and will be sanctioned by the Athletic Commission or by third-party organizations approved by the Commission. There will be no more unsanctioned events allowed;
  • The Commission will have jurisdiction over all combative sports, including professional wrestling, martial arts and kickboxing. The list of organizations approved for sanctioning of martial arts events is gone, and the Commission will lay out criteria for third-party organizations to get approval to operate within the state;
  • These third-party organizations may have the power to sanction pro combative sports, including MMA events;
  • The Commission will have jurisdiction (and licensing ability) over gyms that provide sparring in preparation for pro boxing or pro MMA bouts;
  • Accident insurance for a minimum of $50,000 is required by all pro combative sports promoters, with a million dollar insurance minimum for competition injuries resulting in major brain injuries; and,
  • All combative sporting events, pro or amateur, will pay an 8.5% tax on gate and a 3% tax on broadcasting rights sold (this includes Internet broadcasts)
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LOS ANGELES -- Ben Rothwell implied Monday on The MMA Hour that Cain Velasquez was using performance-enhancing drugs. When informed of Rothwell's remarks later Monday afternoon, the UFC heavyweight champion chuckled.

"That I am?" Velasquez said at a media lunch to promote UFC 188 on Saturday in Mexico City. "That's a big compliment for me, because I'm never known for physique. For someone to point that out, I'm kind of flattered."

Velasquez (13-1) said he was surprised by Rothwell's comments to Ariel Helwani and that perhaps Rothwell was just trying to draw a headline.

"Did you watch his after-fight speech?" Velasquez said with a laugh. "Maybe it's coming from that, I don't know."

Rothwell cut a pro-wrestling style promo after his submission win over Matt Mitrioneat UFC Fight Night: Boetsch vs. Henderson on Saturday night in New Orleans. He finished off what seemed like a scripted speech with a maniacal laugh.

The whole thing was quite funny, but Rothwell seemed to be very serious when heessentially accused Velasquez of taking illegal substances.

"Let's see what happens after July 1, when the advance testing starts kicking in," said Rothwell, an admitted former testosterone replacement therapy (TRT) user. "Let's see if [Velasquez is] still fighting the same way he has. I doubt it. I'm not implying anything, what I'm just saying, I don't believe every division is going to look the same after July 1. If anyone takes offense to that, maybe they ought to look at themselves and look at their problems."

Velasquez, who will attempt to unify the heavyweight belt against Fabricio Werdum on Saturday, felt like Rothwell's implications came out of nowhere. The former Arizona State wrestling All-American thought it was odd that Rothwell would make those statements.

"Yeah, definitely it is," Velasquez said. "Not being a guy who's known for his physique, known for not being on anything. I've been tested before numerous times, before and after all my fights the day of. Again, watch his after-fight speech and you can find out where he's coming from."

Of course, not all drug users have bulging muscles and ripped abs. Velasquez, though, denies taking PEDs.

Full Story: Cain Velasquez stunned by Ben Rothwell's PED implications: 'I'm never known for physique' - MMA Fighting
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In a world where most UFC fighters would be lucky to fight three times in a year, Donald Cerrone is an almost impossible...