Despite the mountain of legal and administrative issues on Chael Sonnen’s shoulders at the time, his manager, Mike Roberts, said Chael actually offered to step in for Thiago Silva against Rampage Jackson at UFC 130 before Matt Hamill eventually did. Roberts told the story on MMA Weekly Radio:
“The thing about Chael is when he does all these interviews, and he sounds crazy when he says ‘I’ll fight any man God ever created.’ He’s telling the truth,” Sonnen’s manager, Mike Roberts of MMA Inc., told MMAWeekly Radio recently.
“When Rampage’s initial opponent went down before all this fiasco was going on, before Hamill stepped in to take the fight, when that went down I was with Chael and he was like ‘I’d love to fight Rampage.’ And I was like, ‘but you’re at 185-pounder’ and he was like, ‘I’d fight him in a heartbeat,’” Roberts revealed.
“Fighting big fights at 205 would not be a problem for him,” Roberts commented.
Sonnen did call the entire light heavyweight division a bunch of “cowards” recently because no one has stepped up and said they want a piece of Jon Jones, but before Sonnen can fight anyone at 205 or even 185, he has to get his issues worked out with the commissions. And according to NSAC head Keith Kizer, that is going to be a much bigger obstacle to overcome than most people think.
In a recent interview with Larry Pepe on Pro MMA Radio, Kizer said that despite all the focus recently on his issues with Chael, he actually needs to work out his problems with the CSAC before he can resolve them with the NSAC. Kizer then went on to detail four separate points Chael needs to address. Transcription via MMA Mania:
“There are four issues involved here. One is his PED use. He’s claiming now that he used testosterone for fights here in Nevada. Maybe he did, maybe he didn’t. I don’t know. I’m not even sure if I believe that. His tests came back negative. He wasn’t over the ratio. His T/E ratio was 16.9 (in Oakland). We have a high cut off ratio here of 6.0 and he wasn’t above that when he fought in Nevada. Maybe he was in a situation where he’s thinking ‘I’m in a world title fight, I need to do something special.’ We’ve had that with other people in world title fights where guys have a lot on the line and they get caught.”
“The second thing is being dishonest. Not to me, but to the California commission. That’s who he was disrespectful for.”
“The third issue was with the referee. That ties more to the second issue. It’s a person’s character. Sonnen after the meeting wrote me a long e-mail and he told me he wasn’t honest with people after the (Paulo) Filho fight (in the WEC) and he had verbally submitted and he’d been frustrated because he’d been doing so well. It was out of frustration of being so close to the belt. There are still people to this day who think he got screwed over for that fight, that he hadn’t yelled out in pain … Even now though, it’s been months since the hearing, I haven’t heard anything publicly from Sonnen admitting that he hadn’t spoken with me. It’s one thing to criticize if a ref does a bad job but just lying about what happened is never an acceptable situation. That comes into play as well. What can be done, if anything, going forward especially if you have no public correction of the mis-statements.”
“The fourth issue is his legal case. Every fighter has to list on their applications if they’ve ever committed a felony and he has to check ‘yes’ on that now because he pleaded guilty. That’s the least of the issues but these are all serious issues. The people that know Chael Sonnen and know Keith Kizer didn’t believe him over me. You hope that he’d do the right thing but I’m not holding my breath.”
As Fightlinker already mentioned, it sounds like all Kizer and the commissions are looking for is Chael to come clean and offer a genuine apology. Of course, whether Chael will actually do that is a different question entirely. Like Mr. Kizer said, I’m not holding my breath.
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