Image Credits: Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Mayra Bueno Silva's journey in the UFC has been a testament to resilience and integrity, both inside the octagon and out. Despite a recent setback where her victory was turned to a no-contest ruling, Silva's spirit remains unshaken, and her sights are firmly set on vindication. Addressing the controversy and her future aspirations, Silva opened up on MMA Fighting’s Trocação Franca podcast, revealing both the struggle she's faced and the triumph she anticipates.
In July, Silva achieved what could have been a defining win of her career by submitting former champion Holly Holm. However, the win was reclassified following Silva's positive test for ritalinic acid — a substance used in her ADHD treatment. While Silva faced a brief suspension that concludes on November 29, her fight spirit is undeterred. Her case, as she detailed, was a misunderstanding, acknowledging her long-term medication use was known to the USADA and UFC. She has since secured a therapeutic use exemption (TUE), clarifying her right to the medication, as it's not performance-enhancing.
Silva’s conviction that she remains the rightful contender for the UFC bantamweight title is palpable. She believes the UFC recognizes her position and stands with her, even as the official announcement awaits. Her confidence extends beyond the administrative decisions — it’s a battle for respect in the face of personal attacks from competitors like Julianna Peña, who criticized Silva amidst her doping case revelations.
Feeling mocked for her mental health situation, Silva vows not just to defeat but to "humiliate" Peña in retaliation, aiming to fight on Peña's home ground for added emphasis. This narrative is not just about reclaiming a title; it's about defending the integrity of athletes dealing with mental health issues and fighting stigma.
Fans of Silva can connect with her on MILLIONS.co, where she's accessible for virtual or in-person appearances and brand deals. Her story is more than a fight record; it’s a narrative of overcoming adversity and advocating for mental health awareness.
As Silva anticipates her return to the octagon, supporters can gear up with official merch and updates, joining her journey as she champions not only in the UFC but also for mental health respect.