Yuliya Efimova Calls Out Michael Phelps For Smoking Weed

In a continuation of the controversy surrounding doping at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, Russia’s Yuliya Efimova has called out Team USA’s Michael Phelps. When asked about Lilly King‘s comments in the lead up to a heated 100 breast final, Efimova responded, “Then what would she say about Michael Phelps?”

A spokesperson for Efimova has explained that she was referring to Phelps’ past suspensions for substance related issues. In 2009, Phelps was suspended for 3 months after a photo of him smoking weed from a bong circulated throughout the media. In 2014, Phelps was suspended for six months and removed from the 2015 U.S. World Championship Team after being arrested for his 2nd DUI. His first DUI came in 2004 when he was 19 years old.

Marijuana is a banned substance, and alcohol is a banned substance in-competition. The first ever disqualification for doping at an Olympics was for alcohol. At the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City, Swedish pentathlete Hans-Gunnar Lilijenwall caused the disqulification of the Swedish team after failing a doping test because he reportedly drank two beers to calm his nerves before the pistol shooting event. The Swedes had initially won bronze, but were forced to return their medals.

While the substances are banned in-competition, all 3 of Phelps’ offenses occurred out of competition.

This echoes the rhetoric we’ve been seeing, as people bring up Phelps and Marijuana, and Australians and Stilnox, to defend Efimova and China’s Sun Yang when they’ve been called out by other athletes in Rio for their past doping violations.

While Efimova has raised questions this year after having a positive doping test for the 2nd time in her career, she’s asserted that she does not support doping, and has never taken a banned substance on purpose.

“There must always be another chance. When you drive a car and break a rule, you just get a ticket. You don’t lose your license for life or get put in jail.”

In Rio, Efimova has faced boos from the crowd and intense emotions as a result of the controversy, and has discussed the impact it has had on her at the Games. Efimova took silver in both breaststroke races in Rio, placing 2nd behind USA’s Lilly King in the 100, and 2nd behind Japan’s Rie Kaneto in the 200.

“There are a lot of emotions. I was standing on the podium and of course I wanted the gold like any ordinary athlete, especially at the Olympics. I was so close. But I was very happy about today’s medal, like the previous medal, because looking back at this time and what was happening to me, it’s a big accomplishment and I’m happy with myself in this situation.”

Efimova will complete her Olympic schedule as part of Russia’s 4×100 medley relay, where she’ll be swimming the breaststroke leg for the team this morning. Also on the relay are Anastasiia Fesikova (back), Svetlana Chimrova (fly), and Veronika Popova (free).

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6 years ago

I can’t wait for Michael Phelps to retire and become a spokesperson for legalization of marijuana.

6 years ago

Lily King is just a typical spoiled white girl who needs that pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks.

Lauren Neidigh
Reply to  Aaron
6 years ago

You ever had a PSL though? Those things are good.

Kevin Corcoran
6 years ago

What I’ve always liked about the Phelps story is the transparency. It’s life….you make mistakes you fall down you get up. I’d like to applaud the entire the entire USA Olympic Team all sports after week 1. Made America proud with your character

Jonathan W Washburn
6 years ago

Every swimmer I know takes performance enhancing substances. Some drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. Some eat a lot of pasta the night before competition. Or just eat ‘food’, which is definitely performance enhancing. Remember age group, when kids sat around spooning KoolAid powder into their mouths? I used to chug a Grande Latte about an hour before the meet. Some swimmers prefer 5-Hour Energy or Red Bull. Another popular method is the C2 available at any GNC store. Not to mention hundreds of other concoctions at ‘nutrition supplement’ websites. Before I get on the soap box decrying some specific plan to enhance performance, I need to stop and think about where we draw the line. Because there is… Read more »

Reply to  Jonathan W Washburn
6 years ago

Seems a lot people only want to draw the line where it’s convenient for them. I know an athlete who was cheated out of their finals spot in the 100 breast at their CIF meet. The USA Swimming computer people changed a swimmers time by over three seconds to get their fellow USA Swimming coach’s athlete in – knocking out the athlete who earned the spot. Because of the heats, they thought no one would notice, but photos of the scoreboard after each heat were taken. Of course, it’s not the Olympics, but never the less, someone’s dream and goal was shattered. A couple of months earlier, pads at a NCAA meet were unplugged – the excuse “it’s better for… Read more »

Reply to  Jonathan W Washburn
6 years ago

5 hour energy doesn’t work, trust me. : /

6 years ago

I think Yulia needs to smoke some weed to tone down her pettiness.

j nordmann
6 years ago

And the crowd went wild with BOOS when efimova appeared. caught twice for doping. then she cried. must b roid rage and dispair.

j nordmann
6 years ago

efimova got roid rage and dispair.

6 years ago

She is hot for sure but her apparent low IQ and the fact that english is not her primary language are going to make it difficult for her. Does anyone know how she is even allowed in the US? Thats a serious question I know there are all kinds of immigration rules that come into play.

About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

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