“Filthy” Tom Lawlor was only two months away from his two-year suspension from the UFC being lifted. However, instead of preparing for a grand comeback to the light heavyweight division, the company released him instead.
Lawlor was suspended from the UFC on October 10th, 2016, after failing a USADA drug test for Ostarine, a banned substance and member of the SARM group. The UFC, however, did not release him, so Lawlor segued to pro wrestling, intending to return to MMA once the suspension had been served.
Lawlor has been wrestling on the independent circuit, including Major League Wrestling (MLW). As the leader of the Team Filthy stable, Lawlor recently won MLW Battle Riot and earned a shot at the MLW World Heavyweight Championship anytime, anywhere.
Though the Ostarine amount found in his system was low, Lawlor couldn’t find an explanation as to what caused the test to turn out positive, going so far as to test his coffee in an attempt to understand how it could have happened.
Lawlor, 35, had an MMA record of 10-6 with one no contest, and a 6-5 UFC record. His last fight to take place for the company was on March 6th, 2016, where he lost to UFC ranked No. 6 Corey Anderson via decision.
Interestingly, Lawlor puts forth in an official statement that he had previously asked for his release during the suspension period, but that these requests were “denied.”
“All things come to an end and it was inevitable that so would my time in UFC,” said Lawlor. “Today I was informed that I will be released by the UFC despite my USADA suspension being nearly over and my previous requests for a release being denied. While the timing is unexpected, hopefully, this opens the doors for me to continue with my mixed martial arts career as well as in the squared circle (pro wrestling). Combat sports is one of my life’s great loves and I look forward to showing and sharing that with the fans as soon as possible.”
Tom Lawlor found popularity in the UFC, in particular during weigh-ins, where he would come out in different costumes that paid homage to a range of different people and characters, including Hulk Hogan, Dan Severn, and The Shockmaster.
He had experience within the squared circle prior to UFC, garnering a WWE tryout before being selected for the cast of The Ultimate Fighter Season 8. Before that, he had won three NCWA small college national championships in wrestling whilst at the University of Central Florida.