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Fox Sports: "Zach Arnold's Fight Opinion site is one of the best spots on the Web for thought-provoking MMA pieces."

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Transcript of Chael Sonnen on HDNet right after CSAC appeal hearing

By Zach Arnold | December 4, 2010

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MIKE STRAKA: “Chael, what was it like being on the hot seat today? You finally had your hearing.”

CHAEL SONNEN: “Well, you know, dealing with the commission… the commission’s a pretty small entity, but a commission has a lot of power over a guy like me. Uh… I haven’t really dealt with this matter until today. I had a team of lawyers. I’VE been dealing with, uh, the Federal Government, uh, all the way dating back almost five years ago, interfered with a campaign I had for public office, so that’s where my attention has been. I’m getting real close to, uh, reaching a deal with the Federal Government on that issue, but that’s where my focus has been. The lawyers handle things and business went well today.”

MIKE STRAKA: “Well, let’s talk about the hearing. You basically, you got your suspension cut in half, which is a victory for you. But, there is an embarrassment issue, you know, people think you’re on steroids. How are you going to deal with this?”

CHAEL SONNEN: “Uh, well, you know, listen… I don’t plan to deal with it at all. I don’t know really anybody that thinks I was on steroids. Um… and if they do, I wouldn’t offer an explanation, uh… or an apology, the facts were the facts and that’s it, that’s between me and the commission and we dealt with it.”

MIKE STRAKA: “Now, the issue was, you were taking some form of testosterone, but you were allowed to with what’s called hypogonadism and Testosterone Replacement Therapy…”


MIKE STRAKA: “And this is something you disclosed and you did disclose it to George Dodd, but there was a protocol issue. Correct?’

CHAEL SONNEN: “That’s correct. I was found not guilty on the substance issue, uh… you used the term steroids which is a big catch-word and that’s really not fair. Now with that said, testosterone falls in the category of steroids. But that’s like saying that mouthwash falls in the category of alcohol or cough syrup is alcohol. It’s not exactly the same thing and it’s not what we’re talking about. One is a medicine versus an illegal substance. Um… I was never accused or suspected of an illegal substance. That was an online rumor that was started and perpetuated and I never did anything to step in and stop it. But I was accused of taking testosterone without the proper disclosure and still to this moment I don’t know what the proper disclosure they were looking for was. I walked straight up to the commissioner and told him, this is what I’m on…”

MIKE STRAKA: “And he testified under oath today that, yes, you did say that.”

CHAEL SONNEN: “Yeah, you know, when they put their case forward, I didn’t disagree with any of it. He said, you know, I went up and told him that, hey, this is going to test positive tomorrow, what do you want me to do? Do you want me to write it down and he said, yeah, let’s write it down. This is the night before the fight. He comes out and uses that against me. ‘Hey, Chael even told me he was on the stuff!’ And I was going, well, right! I even told you that’s what disclosure means, I’m not sure we’re on the same page on what disclosure means. There’s no other process to disclose. In the state of California, they don’t have a form that needs filled out. They don’t have anybody higher up to go to. They just simply use the word disclose and that’s what we did and that’s not even the crux of my argument. I disclosed to them in writing over a year ago, I disclosed to them with their previous commissioner who was actually an interim commissioner between Armando Garcia and the sitting director, uh… it’s medicine and received approval and then all of a sudden they pulled the carpet out from under me and said, geez, we didn’t know anything about it.”

MIKE STRAKA: “Well, you mentioned today at the hearing that it was an embarrassing issue that, you know, that you had to deal with when you were younger and was that part of the crux of… the non-disclosure or the trepidation that you alluded to today in the hearing?”

CHAEL SONNEN: “Well, there was never a non-disclosure from the boss. I went straight to the top. I told him and he approved it. Uh… there’s not a whole lot else I can do. There was other intermediate steps that we didn’t disclose on. Now… I wouldn’t apologize for that, though, I don’t understand, I mean I feel like that’s very redundant to tell the boss and then state it five other times. I really don’t know what to do there but they did get hung up on the fact that we didn’t write it on certain forms. Well those forms, Mike, were filled out in public in public settings as opposed to private.”

MIKE STRAKA: “Well, let’s get down to brass tacks. You lost, you lost your immediate rematch with Anderson Silva. You’re out of fighting for probably a good eight, nine months now when you could have been fighting again. Now Vitor’s getting a chance to fight. You may or may not get a chance to fight Anderson right away again. So, you know, it seems like a small matter in a way but in other ways it’s a very big matter and you lost a lot on that. So, how do you reconcile that?”

CHAEL SONNEN: “Well… I don’t… let’s start from the beginning. I am not a victim here. I am not a martyr in any way and I appreciate the overwhelming support that’s coming in, but the rules are the rules and if I broke the rules then I should be punished. There should be, you know, I believe in commissions and I believe in regulation and that’s not only good for the athletes but it’s good for the industry. The UFC will not go to a municipality that doesn’t have a governing body. So… I’m in support of that and they did not abuse me or mistreat me. They gave me a fair shake and, you know, that’s just the truth. I don’t like it and I don’t like it because I don’t understand it. I don’t have any better clarity today on what it is that they’re looking for than I had yesterday or several months ago. They internally did not offer any suggestions. They themselves were a little bit confused on this issue as well. I thought because they were confused, out of sportsmanship they should have given me the benefit of the doubt. They should have made the leap that if I’m going to go right up to the commissioner and tell him, right up to the executive director, face-to-face, and tell him that that is my attempt to disclose and, Mike, that is not my strongest argument.”

MIKE STRAKA: “What is your strongest argument?”

CHAEL SONNEN: “My strongest argument is I went to them in 2009 and received approval and it wasn’t simple. It wasn’t just a matter of telling them and they said OK. I had to get them paperwork. We had to FAX them stuff. The doctor did that. And we were given approval. That approval is a lifetime approval. You don’t have to go back and re-do it. I work with the Oregon state commission. I know that we’re undermanned and overworked, so with that in mind I did go back to them in 2010. This time I did it by e-mail. I have an e-mail response where they tell me, OK. This is after the request of five different blood tests of which all I submitted. It was very sophisticated to get an approval this time. That’s not my only argument. I then went up again to the executive director and told him face-to-face, this is in my system and this will show up. We then grabbed a form and wrote it down with USADA, the testing agency, and ultimately today what I was found guilty of was not disclosing. I just told you four different ways that I disclosed and uh… you know, I’m not here to re-try this on your show but I am here to say I am a little bit confused. In hindsight, I really don’t know what I could have done differently.”

MIKE STRAKA: “Well, the suspension was lessened to six months. You’re back in action on March 2nd. What’s next for you? Do you know?”

CHAEL SONNEN: “Uh, I do know, but it’s… it’s a secret at this point.”

Topics: Media, MMA, UFC, Zach Arnold | 8 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

8 Responses to “Transcript of Chael Sonnen on HDNet right after CSAC appeal hearing”

  1. klown says:

    What’s the secret? Let the speculation begin.

  2. SixT-4 says:

    Sonnen vs Wanderlei: Wand, you might as well fill out your own toe tag. Where [it] says “Cause of death,” just write, “I pissed off a Gangster.”

    Posted 11 hours ago on his twitter. Well, obviously not HIS twitter. It’s just a hispanic imposter.

  3. grafdog says:

    If he was caught raping he’d get a doctor of psychiatry to say he had low self esteem and had to rape otherwise his low esteem might continue, causing injury and possibly resulting in death for mr sawnone.
    Officially it would be called life saving esteem replacement and(if he knocked her up) human regeneration therapy.

  4. Jonathan says:

    Utter bullshit………… I’m talking about the Garcia/Phan decision….

  5. […] One thing Chael Sonnen is telling the truth about is the overwhelming positive support he is receivi…. He’s absolutely 100% accurate about that. For Mr. Sonnen, the California commission is a perfect foil. It didn’t matter how brash, shameless, truthful or untruthful he was last Thursday, he knew that image of California’s commission is tarnished in the eyes of many as a disorganized and ignorant bureaucratic operation. The more he pressed the commission, the more public sympathy he would earn. What made the hearing fascinating is that Sonnen claims that UFC physician Dr. Jeff Davidson told the California commission before his fight with Yushin Okami about TRT and had things cleared away. (This is being disputed.) Under oath, Sonnen claimed that he talked with Nevada State Athletic Commission boss Keith Kizer about TRT. Kizer has told numerous media members after the hearing that he did no such thing. […]

  6. […] web site about this, but here we go with this report from The West Linn Tidings. This is the matter that Sonnen was referring to in his interview with Mike Straka right after he had his December 2nd appeals meeting with the California State Athletic Commission. […]

  7. […] would be considered by many fans to be in the ‘good’ category. (Nate Marquardt & Chael Sonnen would respectively be in the ‘bad’ & ‘ugly’ categories.) Henderson is […]


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