"Robert received a phone call saying that it was just trace amounts, which generally means that it was just a very small, almost undetectable amount. I mean, it just seems very bizarre to me. We didn't do anything different. They tested us throughout the four weeks of camp. I just don't understand, to be honest with you...They brought in just a regular drinking glass, had Brandon pee in that, and then they had the cup sent for and Brandon poured it into the other cup...It just doesn't seem like a very sound outfit to me. It's not very efficient. I've told managers, promoters, and trainers I would never let them test my athletes the way I've seen how they handle their samples and everything," stated world-class Strength & Conditioning Coach Alex Ariza, who spoke about the recent news of his fighter, Brandon Rios, testing positive and shared his thoughts on VADA. Check it out!
BT: Alex, I'm sure everyone is mobbin' you out there in San Antonio. When did you get news about Brandon's positive test and, more importantly, how did it happen?
AA: Robert was the first one who told me about it and then we kind of sat down and we had to figure out what it was; some kind of over-the-counter stimulant or pre-workout dietary supplement. We really had no idea how. And then, you know, Robert received a phone call saying that it was just trace amounts, which generally means that it was just a very small, almost undetectable amount. I mean, it just seems very bizarre to me. We didn't do anything different. They tested us throughout the four weeks of camp. I just don't understand, to be honest with you.
BT: So it was just the post-fight sample that came up positive with these trace amounts? Everything else that VADA tested leading up to the fight was good?
AA: Yes, apparently that's exactly what had happened. You know, sitting and talking with Robert, we thought that things were a little odd. After the fight, VADA sent somebody to his [Brandon's] room and they didn't have the urine sample cups. They brought in just a regular drinking glass, had Brandon pee in that, and then they had the cup sent for and Brandon poured it into the other cup. Now you start to look at little things like that. Why would they have Brandon just pee in a regular drinking glass?
BT: I remember you made a similar comment about some of their practices when they took blood samples from Brandon while he was sitting next to the ring in the gym.
AA: Yeah, you know, like guys were having lunch right there; it was just never in a sterile environment. It was just out in the open. Again, I'm not really familiar with what that substance is. I don't know if it comes in energy drinks or something else; we'll have to get more details and find out.
BT: Was Brandon taking any different supplements that you normally don't use for any of your other fighters?
AA: No. We disclosed everything, which was just the regular vitamins that everybody else has taken over the years. For six years, we never had anything like that. Again, when you say trace amounts, there was just such a minimal amount that I just don't understand. They just had tested Brandon the week before that. I mean, a dietary supplement? Obviously the FDA hasn't outlawed it or anything like that, so if it's a legal thing that comes over the counter, I just can't imagine; I don't know if it comes in those energy drinks or any of those kinds of things. I just don't know.
BT: When I heard it was some kind of weight loss supplement, it took me by surprise because you guys really didn't have any problems with the weight. I mean, I remember skyping with you guys like the night before the weigh-in and everything seemed good to go.
AA: I know. He didn't have any problems. You know, it's kind of funny, but Richard Schaefer came up to me and said, "Obviously it's a witch hunt." He goes, "I've never trusted any of those people that are dealing with VADA or Victor Conte." In his opinion, he didn't find them to be a very professional outfit, so that's why he uses USADA. To their credit, USADA over the last four weeks with Maidana have been very professional. They do things very discreetly in a very confined and sterile area. They've been doing it for years, so. I just don't put a lot of trust into what has happened and what's transpired. I think it just seems very odd. Look at the timing of it, you know, right before Maidana; it's so transparent what they're trying to do. Again, it wasn't steroids, it wasn't PEDs; I've had a clean record for six years. Now, all of sudden, you deal with VADA, who I've had so many issues with. They've not been very structured. You know, Victor Conte's been involved, Gabriel Montoya, people that don't have the education or credentials to be involved with it. It just doesn't seem like a very sound outfit to me. It's not very efficient. I've told managers, promoters, and trainers I would never let them test my athletes the way I've seen how they handle their samples and everything.
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