Fallen featherweight Cristiane Santos has come forward to face allegations of steroid use and, as it turns out, express complete accountability for her actions.
Last week Santos’ name came up in connection with a failed drug test attached to her December destruction of Hiroko Yamanaka at Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Masvidal. As a result she was not only suspended by the CSAC for a year but fined $2,500, handed a “No Contest” instead of a win, and ultimately stripped of her Strikeforce belt.
“While I was preparing myself for my last fight I was having a difficult time cutting weight and used a dietary supplement that I was assured was safe and not prohibited from use in sports competition,” wrote Santos in a statement through MMAPrime. “It was never my intention to obtain an unfair advantage over Hiroko, mislead Strikeforce, the Commission or my fans. I train harder than any fighter in MMA and do not need drugs to win in the cage, and I have proven this time and time again! My only mistake is not verifying the diet aid with my doctor beforehand, and understanding that it was not approved for use in the ring.”
“I am ultimately responsible for everything I put in my body, and at the end of the day, there is no excuse for having a prohibited substance in my system,” the disgraced fighter continued. “I do not condone the use of any performance enhancing drugs by myself or any other professional athlete, and willingly accept the penalties and fines that have been handed down to me by the California State Athletic Commission and those of the Strikeforce/Zuffa organization.”
Santos closed by vowing to come back and prove it was a one-time error and not habitual use, saying, “I will do everything I can to show my fans that I can still compete at the professional level without the use of any prohibited substances, and ask God’s forgiveness for my mistake.”
“Cyborg” holds an overall record of 10-1 with 8 TKOs. Due to the suspension she will now spend another year on the sidelines after already missing seventeen months prior to last month’s match-up with the break stemming from contractual issues and an overall lack of challengers for Santos’ featherweight belt.
PHOTO CREDIT – STRIKEFORCE