After a nine-month suspension, UFC heavyweight Alistair Overeem appeared in front of the Nevada State Athletic Commission on Tuesday and was granted a license to fight.
The five-person panel voted unanimously to grant the hulking heavyweight a license, which allows for Overeem to face Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva in their scheduled bout in Las Vegas at UFC 156 on Feb. 2.
“I’m ready to get my life back on track,” Overeem said during the hearing.
During Overeem’s suspension, the fighter provided the NSAC with five drug tests, all of which he administered himself, according to NSAC executive director Keith Kizer. The results of those tests came back negative. Additionally, the governing body subjected the fighter to two tests of their own. Both those tests came back negative, as well.
Overeem was originally suspended in April following a surprise drug test in March that showed elevated levels of testosterone. The commission allows for athletes to have a testosterone-to-epitestosterone ratio of 6:1, but Overeem’s test showed the fighter had a ratio of 14:1.
In the weeks that followed being suspended, Overeem appeared before the commission and explained that his positive test stemmed from an anti-inflammatory injection administered by a doctor named Hector Molina. The treatment, Overeem said, produced the elevated testosterone levels without his knowledge. The commission, however, denied the fighter licensure at the time and informed him he could not reapply for nine months.
With the license now secure, the Overeem-Silva fight has a green light, and the winner will likely be next in line for a shot at newly-crowned heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez.
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