Alistair Overeem is back in the hurt business after being granted a fighter's license in a unanimous vote by the Nevada state athletic commission. The ruling clears Overeem for a planned UFC 156 matchup with Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva.
Overeem appeared before the regulatory body on Tuesday morning at the Grant Sawyer State Office Building in Las Vegas, and faced little resistance from the five-person panel.
According to testimony given by NSAC's executive director Keith Kizer, Overeem sent in five self-administered tests between June and December that were all clean. Additionally, he faced two tests through the commission, on November 16 and December 21. Likewise, he passed those screenings.
Overeem also noted that he had a new nutritionist and improved medical team put in place.
"I think we did everything we could to correct ourselves from the errors that were made," he said during his brief hearing, which lasted just over 10 minutes. "I'm ready to get my life back on track."
After commissioner Pat Lundvall asked Overeem about what lessons he could impart to the commission about improving testing, the group moved to reach a decision. It was quick and unanimous in his favor, ending his nine months on the sidelines.
The 6-foot-5, 263-pound Overeem (32-11, 1 no contest) was one of six fighters faced with a surprise test on March 27, 2012 following a press conference to publicize UFC 146, where he was supposed to be challenging Junior dos Santos for the heavyweight championship. According to the NSAC, Overeem produced a testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio of 14:1, failing the test. The NSAC uses 6:1 as its cutoff.
The 32-year-old Overeem went before the commission the next month and said that he had been injected by a Texas doctor named Hector Molina with an anti-inflammatory cocktail that unknowingly contained testosterone. As a result, he had his request for licensure denied and was told not to re-apply for nine months. While the sidelining cost him a chance to fight dos Santos for the title, it is possible that a dominant win over Silva in Las Vegas on Feb. 2 will propel him into a championship match with new titleholder Cain Velasquez.