The fall from grace of former MMA fighter Johny Hendricks was one of the most dramatic in the sport’s history. Hendricks was unstoppable at his best, known for his exceptional wrestling abilities and his unmatched power in his left hand. His journey to the top of the welterweight division in the early 2010s was thrilling, as he defeated top fighters like Jon Fitch, Carlos Condit, and Martin Kampmann.
Hendricks even managed to succeed in grappling-heavy fights against other talented wrestlers like Josh Koscheck and Mike Pierce. But three years after his success, Hendricks began to crumble as he fell down the ranks, and his wins turned into losses.
Many believe that the involvement of USADA (United States Anti-Doping Agency) played a part in Hendricks’ downfall due to suspected performance-enhancing drug (PED) use. Despite never testing positive for PEDs during his entire 10-year MMA career, Hendricks’ most notable opponent’s coach, Firas Zahabi, was convinced that foul play took place.
Hendricks performed remarkably well against Georges St-Pierre in his first title fight, but ultimately lost in an incredibly controversial split decision. The lead up to the fight became peculiar when there was talk about drug testing, which ultimately became an unnecessary plotline that put the fighter and his opponent on edge.
Hendricks found himself back in a title fight, which he won against Robbie Lawler, but his career quickly spiraled out of control following a series of losses. His rapid decline, accompanied by weight misses, was hard for fans to comprehend.