Both George St. Pierre and Chael Sonnen have entered into the USADA drug testing pool. Both fighters will undergo the full six months of testing before the possibility of competition.
Chael Sonnen retired from professional MMA in June of 2014. The former fighter asked to be part of the testing pool while he considers a possible comeback. In 2014 Sonnen failed two drug tests around UFC 175 resulting in a two-year suspension by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. He failed a total of five drug tests before UFC 175 and is unapologetic in his use of PEDs:
“I’m not going to apologize because I’m not sorry. I’m a consenting adult; I knew exactly what I was doing. This was a premeditated decision. If I go jump in my car and I back up and I hit my neighbor’s garbage cans, I’m sorry for that. This was a calculated decision. I made the decision, and I’ll live with it. That’s it. I wouldn’t make any excuses about it.”
There is some skepticism around Sonnen’s entry into the testing pool. When Sonnen was asked if his comeback was imminent he said, “Not if the test is as good as I remember it being.”
George St. Pierre, widely considered to be the best MMA fighter of all time, has also begun testing by USADA to make a comeback to the sport. Pierre has been very outspoken against the use of PEDs in MMA so he decided to forego the option of getting a testing exemption similar to the one Brock Lesnar received so that he could fight at UFC 200.
Based on interviews done by both athletes it appears that it is much more likely that we will see George St. Pierre return to the ring than Chael Sonnen.
There is a clear risk by placing Chael Sonnen in a big-time program because there’s a chance he might not be eligible at the time of the fight. He has an extensive history of using PEDs and really seems to have no interest in staying clean of all PEDs, openly saying that he won’t pass testing if the testing is effective.
George St. Pierre has been negotiating with the UFC through his agent over his first fight back and the financial compensation. The sale of the UFC essentially hit the reset button on some of the talks. According to George St. Pierre the only thing holding him back from participating is getting the right agreement with the UFC.