Morning Report: Chael Sonnen details MMA PED ‘game’ in 2022: ‘We all know our own’ (2022)

Chael Sonnen is no stranger to performance-enhancing drugs in MMA.

Before USADA ever entered the fold to help clean up the UFC in July 2015, the three-time title challenger ran into trouble with the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) in what was perhaps his best career performance.

It was revealed shortly after suffering a fifth-round triangle armbar submission loss in the instant classic first bout with Anderson Silva at UFC 117 that “The American Gangster” tested positive for elevated testosterone levels. While fans clamored for an instant rematch with “The Spider,” they were forced to wait as Sonnen was fined $2,500 and couldn’t return to action until a one-year suspension was served.

“100 percent of the time — not maybe — use USADA by example. Very good, not 100 percent. 100 percent of the time, Chael’s eye test will be right. Not maybe,” Sonnen said on his YouTube channel. “I assume that other people in the know had the same skill that I did. Now, other users do. We all know our own.”

In 2022, it feels like a rarity to see news break that a fighter has been flagged for banned substances. After some years of trial and error with names like Yoel Romero and Josh Barnett, that can be attributed to USADA tightening up their investigation rules and not publicly announcing a failure until fully examined. Fighters, of course, are still allowed to speak openly if they please when caught up in such a situation, however.

Sonnen, 45, is past his days as a competitor but still watches the sport closely working in various roles like analyst, commentator, and even promoter. As good as USADA has done since the UFC’s requested their assistance, there are still some who slip through the cracks, according to the West Linn, Oregon native.

“The sport is so clean, it really is so clean. It’s not perfect, it’s a game,” Sonnen said. “It’s a game with a flawed phycology by the user of which I used to be. Which is, if it’s not on the banned list, then it’s not banned. There is a technicality to that rule, there really is. If you could get a chemist that could change one strand and create something new of which has not been identified by anybody… You see where this gets really interesting.

“So the guys that are using, the guys that are failing the drug tests, they are known but you’ve got to catch them. And there’s a number of things about the agreements that is not the way that it’s advertised to you guys. The first thing you’ll need to know is what they’re using. The second thing you’ll need to know is – you’ll have no idea why I’m bringing this up unless you’re in the know – is how they’re using it. That is going to lose most of you but the ones that it didn’t know what I mean. Once you figure those things out, you will then get to the third and least important thing which is when.”

In somewhat of a full circle fashion, Sonnen’s UFC career came to an end in 2014 thanks to his failure to stay clean pre-USADA.

Before all had been revealed, Sonnen announced his retirement fresh off the heels of his canceled grudge match with Wanderlei Silva — a fight that wouldn’t come to fruition until years later in Bellator. Coincidentally, Silva’s removal from the bout came as a result of his refusal to take a random drug test, entering Vitor Belfort into his spot.

Sonnen then failed a random drug test of his own. He later failed another random test for human growth hormone (HGH), recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO), anastrozole, and human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG), which led to his release from the UFC and a global competition suspension of up to two years.

“Now when you watch people playing this game and when I went down on this, I ended up getting hired by the Nevada State Athletic Commission,” Sonnen said. “’Hired’ is because I don’t know a better word to use. It was part of my disciplinary action. But my phone rank a lot and not only did I answer all those calls, I made a bunch of them to a lot of buddies and I said stop. They’re coming, they’re going to get you, I know what you were told, I know what you think, it’s better and it’s different – now stop. Of those people, not one of them was caught, three ended up going down. Not one of them stopped, they thought that they had it beat.

“Here’s what influenced me — it wasn’t losing my license, it wasn’t getting suspended. It was Dana White. When asked about baseball and steroids, he said, ‘It’s a guy hitting a ball with a stick, this is combat where somebody could hurt or kill somebody by doing something secretly that’s against the rules.’ boom. That changed me. That was the moment, oh my goodness. Gotta look at the man in the mirror, whoa. Got this all wrong. It was just one of those things. Until you have that revelation, you don’t have that revelation.”

Legacy. Alexander Volkanovski: I’ll be GOAT after Max Holloway win at UFC 276.

(Video) The MMA Hour: UFC 275 Reaction, Miesha Tate, Leon Edwards, Anthony Smith, And More | Jun 13, 2022

future. Lyoto Machida undecided on free agency future after Bellator 281.

Response. Endeavor CFO defends UFC fighter pay, says comparisons to the NFL or NBA are unfair.

satisfied. Rose Namajunas: ‘I got what I wanted’ out of Carla Esparza rematch at UFC 274.

Between the Links.

Top Finishes From UFC Vegas 54 Fighters.

UFC Vegas 54: Fighters You Should Know.

Bellator 281 weight-ins.

Bellator 281: Lyoto Machida vs. Fabian Edwards | Leaving a Legacy.

Is This a Sign of a Money-Hungry BJJ Coach?

Heck of a Morning. MMA Fighting’s Mike Heck reacts to Pat Barry and Rose Namajunas’ MMA Hour interview, discusses Michael Chandler’s star power, and chats with Houston Alexander.

(Video) The MMA Hour: Tony Ferguson, Dustin Poirier, Michael Page, and more | May 16, 2022

good morning!

Wait, hold on…

A real man would’ve shit there.

— The Diamond (@DustinPoirier) May 12, 2022

MMA is expensive.

Heatin’ up.

Ambassador Jiri.


Valentina is here.

Get some.

new energy.

Your daily Sanko: A return to competition…?

Son’d by the internet.

Who says atomweights don’t finish?

(Video) The MMA Hour: Jack Hermansson, Al Iaquinta, Eddie Hearn in studio and more | Feb 2, 2022


Congrats, sir.

My second @ufc contract has been signed, sealed and delivered #LFG

— Journey Newson (@journeyj135ufc) May 12, 2022

Best Bros.

Tree is not okay.

Itsuki in America!

The most delicate of inappropriate fist poses.

Dana having some fun.


Jim Miller (34-16) vs. Bobby Green (29-13-1); UFC 276

David Onama (9-1) vs. Austin Lingo (9-1); UFC Fight Night, July 9

Paul Craig (16-4-1) vs. Volkan Oezdemir (17-6); UFC London, July 23

Diego Ferreira (17-5) vs. Drakkar Klose (12-2-1); UFC 277

(Video) The MMA Hour: Jorge Masvidal, Tyron Woodley, Ilia Topuria, and more | Jan. 19, 2022

Umar Nurmagomedov (14-0) vs. Nate Maness (14-1); UFC Vegas 57, July 25

Vicente Luque (21-8-1) vs. Geoff Neal (14-4); UFC Fight Night, Aug. 6

Terrance McKinney (12-4) vs. Erick Gonzalez (14-6); UFC Fight Night, Aug. 6

Yazmin Jauregui (8-0) vs. Istela Nunes (6-3); UFC Fight Night, Aug. thirteen

Sean Woodson (9-1) vs. Luis Saldana (16-7); UFC Fight Night, Aug. 20

This week has felt like one of the wildest weeks of MMA event fallout we’ve had in a while, at least in terms of things to discuss. But now it’s onto the next. Happy Friday the 13th! Don’t walk under any ladders, watch out for black cats, be careful of sidewalk cracks, thanks for reading, and enjoy the weekend, folks!


Who wins on Saturday?

  • 62%
    Jan Blachowicz

    (47 votes)

  • 37%
    Aleksandar Rakic

    (28 votes)

75 votes total

Vote Now

(Video) Fight Week | #UFCLondon Review Show With Michael Bisping 🇬🇧 Paddy The Baddy & Molly McCann Takeover

If you find something you’d like to see in the Morning Report, hit up @DrakeRiggs_ on Twitter and let him know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram and like us on Facebook.


What ped did Chael Sonnen take? ›

The Nevada State Athletic Commission randomly tested Sonnen last month while he was in Las Vegas to attend a UFC news conference. Results confirmed the presence of two illegal substances, anastrozole and clomiphene. NSAC chairman Francisco Aguilar confirmed the test results to on Tuesday.

How much money did Chael Sonnen make? ›

Chael Sonnen Net Worth: Chael Sonnen is a retired American Mixed Martial Artist who has a net worth of $10 million.

Did Chael Sonnen quit? ›

On April 4, 2019, it was announced that Sonnen would face Lyoto Machida on June 14, 2019, at Bellator 222 in Bellator's return to Madison Square Garden. He lost the fight via TKO in the second round. Sonnen announced his retirement from MMA in the post-fight interview.

When did Chael Sonnen test positive? ›

In a statement to Helwani about his June 5 positive test, Sonnen said: Yes, the Commission is aware of other prescribed medications I was taking and I will not challenge their allegations.

Did Chael Sonnen test positive for PEDS? ›

According to California State Athletic Commission Executive Officer George Dodd, UFC Middleweight contender Chael Sonnen has been notified that he tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs following his UFC 117 loss to Anderson Silva.

Did Chael Sonnen fail drug test? ›

Sonnen failed random drug tests on two separate occasions for human growth hormone, EPO, anastrozole and clomiphene. He retired from mixed martial arts shortly after the first failed results came back.

Who is the richest UFC fighter today? ›

Khabib Nurmagomedov

His net worth in 2022 is $40 million, making him the wealthiest UFC fighter after Conor McGregor and Rorion Gracie. In this handout image provided by UFC, Khabib Nurmagomedov of Russia poses during the UFC 254 weigh-in on October 23, 2020 on UFC Fight Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

Is Chael Sonnen intelligent? ›

Mirko Cro Cop claims Chael Sonnen has the IQ of a "children's shoe size", insisting it is difficult to get mad at the UFC middleweight because he does not know what he's saying.

How rich is John Jones? ›

What is Jon Jones' net worth? According to Celebrity Net Worth, Jon Jones' net worth is three million dollars as one of the UFC's most well-known fighters. His professional debut came in April 2008, before making his UFC bow four months later.

Did Sonnen leave UFC after losing to Silva? ›

Chael Sonnen has closed the book on his loser-leaves-town offer to Anderson Silva, claiming the UFC middleweight champion has not accepted the challenge. Sonnen stood in the centre of the Octagon at UFC 136 and called out Silva to a title rematch.

Who is the best UFC fighter of all time? ›

Georges St-Pierre is maybe the greatest pure athlete in UFC history.

Does Chael Sonnen have a daughter? ›

What did Chael Sonnen do to his face? ›

According to the court documents, he allegedly fought six people, including a woman. TMZ reported that the court documents indicate “Sonnen choked a man, punched and/or struck a woman, and punched and/or kneed others in the head and face during the incident.”

What drugs did Chael Sonnen use? ›

Things went from bad to worse for The American Gangster after a second drug test revealed he tested positive for human growth hormone (HGH) and recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO), per MMA Fighting.

Who tested positive for steroids in UFC? ›

Unfortunately, at one point, Cyborg failed the rigorous USADA drug test. The Grand Slam Champion tested positive for an anabolic steroid called Stanozolol after defending his title against Hiroko Yamanaka, which resulted in her victory being declared a no-contest.

Who is the richest fighter in world? ›

Conor McGregor is the richest MMA fighter in the world, with an estimated net worth of $110 million.

Who is the richest athlete in the world? ›

The World's 10 Highest-Paid Athletes for the Last Year, per...
  • Lionel Messi, $130 million.
  • LeBron James, $121.1 million.
  • Cristiano Ronaldo, $115 million.
  • Neymar, $95 million.
May 26, 2022

Who is the richest actor? ›

Let us now take a dive into the 20 richest actors in the world as of 2022. The world's richest actor is none other than American Actress Jami Gertz clocking 3 billion dollars net worth, followed by Indian actor Shah Rukh Khan at 600 million dollars.

How much do UFC champions get paid? ›

The fighter's popularity and recent results affect the payouts each fighter receives ranging from tens of thousands of dollars, to a few hundred thousand dollars. UFC Champions and fighters with the biggest fan bases receive the best type of contract, the highest Tier: ranging from $500,000 to $3,000,000 per fight.

How much do female UFC fighters make? ›

Earning Power of Female Fighters

Flyweights earned the least average career earnings at $168,720. Top earners in the UFC Women's Divisions were Joanna Jedrzejczyk ($1.8 million per fight), Holly Holm ($1.6 million), Amanda Nunes ($1.2 million), and Rose Namajunas ($987,500).

How rich is Dana White? ›

Dana Frederick White Jr.

(born July 28, 1969) is an American businessman who serves as president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, a global mixed martial arts organization. In August 2019, White's net worth was estimated at $500 million.

Are Chael Sonnen and Anderson Silva friends? ›

The rivalry between the two was heated at the time but in recent years both men have become much more cordial with one another, and are basically friends now. As Silva's friend, Sonnen offered the hard truth about his current aspirations to fight again.

Does Chael Sonnen like Anderson Silva? ›

Free Fight: Anderson Silva vs Chael Sonnen 1 | UFC 117, 2010 - YouTube

Did Chael Sonnen ever won a belt? ›

"The question here is: did [Chael Sonnen] ever become a UFC champion? He was never a UFC champion. He is all talk. That's the only thing he did back then.

Who is best fighter in the world? ›

Top 10 Fighters of All Time
  • #8: Manny Pacquiao. ...
  • #7: Georges St-Pierre. ...
  • #6: Mike Tyson. ...
  • #5: Muhammad Ali. ...
  • #4: Joe Louis. ...
  • #3: Bruce Lee. ...
  • #2: Anderson Silva. ...
  • #1: Sugar Ray Robinson. Cited by many as history's greatest boxer, Robinson is the man for whom the pound-for-pound rankings were created.

Who is the best fighter ever? ›

The fans' top 5 greatest boxers of all time
  1. Muhammad Ali. The Greatest was not only one of the best heavyweights of all time, he was also one of the most colorful. ...
  2. Sugar Ray Robinson. ...
  3. Rocky Marciano. ...
  4. Joe Louis. ...
  5. Mike Tyson.

Who is No 1 UFC fighter? ›

Men's pound for pound
RankFighterNext fight
1Kamaru UsmanUFC 278
2Alexander Volkanovski
3Israel Adesanya
12 more rows

Who is Chael Sonnen married to? ›

How many losses does Chael Sonnen have? ›

Chael Sonnen Record: 29-15-1
lossChael Sonnen Jon Jones6 20
lossChael Sonnen Anderson Silva22 15
winChael Sonnen Michael Bisping40 30
winChael Sonnen Brian Stann28 2
16 more rows

Is Chael Sonnen in trouble? ›

Former UFC Fighter Chael Sonnen's Battery Charges Dropped After Alleged Hotel Brawl. A Nevada judge dismissed five misdemeanor battery chargers against former UFC star Chael Sonnen on Thursday.

What did Chael Sonnen get suspended for? ›

The former UFC contender was ultimately suspended for two years for testing positive for Clomiphene, Anastrozole, HCG, HGH and EPO in separate tests, given on May 24 and June 5. He was also forced to pay the costs of the tests that ultimately nabbed him.

What does EPO do for fighters? ›

Erythropoietin, or EPO, is a performance-enhancing substance that is also produced naturally as a hormone in the body. It stimulates the bone marrow to produce more red blood cells, increasing oxygen supply to the blood, which allows an athlete to train or perform more efficiently.

Who has been banned from UFC? ›

UFC Sanctions List
NameViolationSanction Terms
Pessoa Nunes, RaphaelHydrochlorothiazide (HCTZ)1-Year Suspension
Ronson, JesseMetandienone20-Month Suspension
Sherman, ChaseAnastrozole9-Month Suspension
Fritzen Procopio, LaraOstarine6-Month Suspension
117 more rows

Are steroids good? ›

Steroid supplements are weaker forms of androgen. Their effects aren't well known, but it's thought that, when taken in large doses, they cause effects similar to other androgens like testosterone. But research studies suggest that they do very little or nothing to improve athletic performance.

Are steroids banned in MMA? ›

Diuretics, amphetamines, and other means of performance enhancement and body alteration have been used besides steroids. These are all banned substances under the UFC's rules. However, none have been as vilified as steroids.

How much money did Anderson Silva make? ›

Anderson Silva Salary

His total UFC earnings are $8,732,000. Anderson Silva was the fourth highest paid fighter in the UFC.

How much money has khabib made? ›

Khabib Nurmagomedov: Net Worth and Salary 2022

However, he was fined $0.5 million for the post-fight brawl. Nurmagomedov was awarded a whopping $6,090,000 for his second title defense against Dustin Poirier. As per The Sports Daily, 'The Eagle' has made $ 14,770,000 in his 13 UFC fights.

What is Dana White Worth? ›

Dana Frederick White Jr. (born July 28, 1969) is an American businessman who serves as president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, a global mixed martial arts organization. In August 2019, White's net worth was estimated at $500 million.

How rich is Francis Ngannou? ›

Francis Ngannou is a mixed martial artist from Cameroon who has a net worth of $5 million. Francis Ngannou competes in the heavyweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. In January of 2022, he became the UFC Heavyweight Champion by unanimous decision after defeating Ciryl Gane.

What is Michael Bisping salary? ›

According to celebrity net worth, Michael Bisping's Net Worth is estimated to be around $9 million.

How much does Nate Diaz make per fight? ›

Diaz earned $520,000 after his fight against Jorge Masvidal at UFC 244. Nate Diaz's career earnings come down to $4,891,000. He has an endorsement deal with sportswear giant Reebok which pays him $20,000 for every fight.

Who has beaten Anderson Silva? ›

Anderson Silva: How Weidman Killed the 'King' at UFC 162. UFC 162 brought one of the greatest surprises in recent UFC history as the relatively inexperienced Chris Weidman knocked out the great Anderson Silva.

Who is richer Mayweather or McGregor? ›

Former world champion boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. and UFC legend Conor McGregor are two of the wealthiest athletes in the world. However, Mayweather's wealth far surpasses that of McGregor. Conor McGregor currently has a net worth of $200 million.

Has khabib ever lost fight? ›

Khabib Nurmagomedov officially retired from MMA for good in October 2020 having never tasted defeat after defeating Justin Gaethje at UFC 254. In 29 professional bouts, the Russian never even so much as suffered a scratch let alone tasted a loss – but his amateur career was not as unblemished.

What is Justin gaethje salary? ›

UFC Payouts, Salaries and Win Bonuses | UFC 274
Donald Cerrone$350,000
Justin Gaethje$300,000
Rose Namajunas$300,000
Ovince Saint Preux$260,000X
26 more rows
May 8, 2022

How much money is Joe Rogan worth? ›

Joe Rogan is an actor, comedian, and martial arts expert from the United States. He is also a UFC commentator and podcast host with a an estimated total net worth of more than $120 million .

How much is Donald Trump worth? ›

How much does Joe Rogan make in the UFC? ›

But, what salary does UFC actually pay Joe Rogan? Joe Rogan makes an average of $50, 000 per main UFC event and that makes about $550, 000 in a year. But, even though UFC is the one that made Rogan famous, that salary can't compare to other Rogan's earnings, such as his famous Podcast.

How much is a UFC fighters salary? ›

The average UFC fighter made $147,965 in 2020, up from an average earnings of $146,673 in 2019.

Are UFC fighters underpaid? ›

The UFC in the early 2000s paid as much as 40% of their profits to fighters. That number has steadily decreased since that time. The most recent numbers suggest that fighters make 16% of the UFC profits, which is a far cry from the 50% that the NBA and NFL players get.

How much does Israel Adesanya make per fight? ›

Per The Sports Daily, Adesanya earned about $153,000 in his UFC debut in 2018. When he fought Anderson Silva at UFC 234 in 2019, Adesanya reportedly earned about $178,000. When he beat Robert Whittaker for the UFC middleweight title at UFC 243, Adesanya earned $490,000.


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