Holly Holm’s ‘crazy’ link with drug company

Holly Holm's 'crazy' link with drug company

When Holly Holm knocked out Ronda Rousey on Saturday night at UFC 193, one of the most conspicuous congratulations came from Intel Pharma — not for what it said, but for what it is.

There’s no evidence Holm has ever taken any banned or illegal substances, but it’s an odd business move for a professional athlete to openly associate and have a sponsorship deal with a company that sells or has sold such substances.

Intel Pharma has sold at least two products — Ligandrol and Ostadrol — that contain SARMs, or selective androgen receptor modulators, which are anabolic ingredients banned by both the World Anti-Doping Agency and the US Anti-Doping Agency. SARMs are not steroids, but they mimic steroid’s effects in more focused, selective parts of the body. They are illegal to sell as supplements under FDA guidelines. Another two products, Ibutamoren HGH and Clenadrol, contain different banned substances. Aside from Clenadrol, which the company stands by, Intel Pharma says it stopped selling all these products months ago.​

Taking money and sponsorship from a company that sold banned PEDs would open Holm up to scrutiny and potentially harm her newly valuable brand. Business Insider made multiple attempts to reach Holm’s camp but did not receive comment on the issue.

The UFC said in a prepared statement that Holm had always tested clean:

As independent contractors, UFC athletes can accept endorsements and sponsorships from supplement companies that do not conflict with their contractual obligations at official UFC events. UFC has provided athletes with extensive education on the UFC anti-doping program, and extensive education on the dietary supplement industry. UFC athletes are both aware that they are liable for any substances put into their body, whether knowingly or unknowingly, and still must adhere to the requirements set forth by the UFC Anti-Doping Policy.

Holly Holm has provided five separate samples for testing since the inception of the program on July 1. Of the samples that have returned results, all of those results were clean.

Sportact Editors and Wire Services