Performance-enhancing drugs played a large role in both the rise and the fall of Lance Armstrong. Even though his use and subsequent lies about taking substances have helped turned Armstrong into a figure despised by many, he still is not completely opposed to them.
Armstrong was interviewed for the two-part documentary about him called “Lance” that is being aired by ESPN. He was asked how he would feel if his son, a college football, said he wanted to take PEDs.
“I would say that’s a bad idea. You’re a freshman in college. It might be a different conversation if you’re in the NFL. But at this point in your life and your career, not worth it,” Armstrong said.
The quote makes it clear that Armstrong is open to PEDs for his son depending on the circumstances. It has to be factored into a cost-benefit analysis for him. And what does that mean? He still endorses cheating, which is why so many people dislike him.
Lance Armstrong recently offered an interesting answer about whether his performance-enhancing drug use caused his cancer.
Armstrong is the subject of a new documentary called “Lance” that is being aired by ESPN. In the documentary, Armstrong is asked whether he thinks he got cancer from his doping.
“I don’t know the answer to that,” Armstrong answered. “And I don’t want to say no because I don’t think that’s right, either. I don’t know if it’s yes or no, but I certainly wouldn’t say no.
“The only thing I will tell you is the only time in my life that I ever did growth hormone was the 1996 season [before being diagnosed with moderate to advanced cancer in October 1996]. So just in my head, I’m like, ‘growth, growing, hormones and cells.’ Like, if anything good needs to be grown, it does. But wouldn’t it make sense that if anything bad is there, that it, too, would grow?”
Armstrong began training with controversial trainer Michele Ferrari in late 1995, and that’s when he began using erythropoetin (EPO), which increases red blood cells. A former teammate says Armstrong told a doctor in 1996 that he used growth hormone, cortisone, EPO, steroids and testosterone.”
Armstrong was diagnosed with stage three testicular cancer in October 1996. By the time doctors examined him, they found out the cancer had spread to his lymph nodes, lungs, brain, and abdomen. Armstrong underwent surgery and chemotherapy to remove and treat the cancer. By February 1997, he was declared cancer-free.
Armstrong resumed his professional cycling career and later won seven straight Tour de Frances from 1999-2005.
The answer from Armstrong is quite notable. Back in 2013, when he first finally publicly admitted to doping on Oprah, Lance said he did not think his PED use caused his cancer. Now he either has changed his mind or is being more honest with himself and the public.
ESPN has followed its success with “The Last Dance” documentary series on Michael Jordan and the 1990s Chicago Bulls by airing a two-part documentary on Lance Armstrong. The documentary, directed by Marina Zenovich, examines the rise and fall of Armstrong.
Jeff Novitzky played a role in investigating the use of performance-enhancing drugs by Armstrong’s cycling teams but did not participate in the documentary. Novitzky told The Athletic’s Greg Rosenstein that he turned down the chance to help the documentary because Armstrong was involved.
Novitzky is 52 and became known for leading the IRS’ BALCO investigation that blew the lid on the use of steroids by Barry Bonds and other athletes, like Jason Giambi, Marion Jones, Tim Montgomery and Bill Romanowski. He later got involved in the Armstrong case and helped bring down the cyclist, who lied for years about being clean.
Novitzky now works for the UFC as the Vice President of Athlete Health and Performance.
Lance Armstrong and his longtime girlfriend Anna Hansen are finally planning to tie the knot.
On Tuesday, Armstrong shared a photo on Instagram that showed Hansen with a ring on her left ring finger. The former cyclist captioned the photo “She said…. YES!!!!”
Armstrong and Hansen have been dating for nearly 10 years and have two children together — a 7-year-old son and a 6-year-old daughter. Armstrong also has three children with his ex-wife Kristin Richard, whom he divorced in 2003.
The engagement has seemed like a long time coming. If you want to know how deep the love between Armstrong and Hansen runs, just read about the time the future Mrs. Armstrong took the blame for Lance after he hit two parked cars.
Congratulations to the happy couple.
An arbitration panel in Texas voted 2-1 against Lance Armstrong and awarded $10 million to SCA Promotions, a sports insurance company that helped contribute to the cyclist’s downfall.
SCA Promotions paid Armstrong bonuses in 2002 and 2003 for winning the Tour de France, but they withheld his bonus in 2004 amid speculation he cheated. Armstrong sued as a result and the two sides went to arbitration in 2005. They settled in 2006 with SCA being ordered to pay $7.5 million. At the time, Armstrong denied cheating, which is why SCA settled.
In the face of mounting evidence against him, Armstrong finally admitted to Oprah in 2013 that he did cheat, leading many companies, including SCA, to pursue claims against him. The result is that SCA won the latest arbitration case and filed a motion to have a court order Armstrong to pay the award as a final judgment, USA Today’s Brent Schrotenboer reports.
“We are very pleased with this result,” SCA’s president and founder Bob Hamman said in a statement via USA Today. “It is hard to describe how much harm Lance Armstrong’s web of lies caused SCA but this is a good first start towards repairing that damage.”
Armstrong tried to have the case blocked but appealed to the Texas Supreme Court unsuccessfully. SCA noted in its legal filing that it believes Armstrong will not pay the $10 million award.
In addition to this case, Armstrong was also recently in headlines for hitting two parked cars and letting his girlfriend take the blame.
Lance Armstrong and his girlfriend Anna Hansen have been caught in a lie about a driving incident in December where their vehicle hit two parked cars and left the scene.
Aspen police say Armstrong’s car was identified as the one that hit two parked cars on Dec. 29 and left before police arrived to the scene. Armstrong’s girlfriend initially took the blame and said she was driving the car. She claimed they returned on foot after hitting the cars and she offered to pay for the damage. She also said she was driving because Lance had been drinking at a party they attended that night.
A police investigator did not buy Hansen’s story, so the investigator contacted the valet service, which said it was Armstrong who got into the driver’s seat. Confronted with the new information, Hansen changed her story and said she and Armstrong stopped at a store and switched seats. Two days later, she changed the story again and finally admitted Lance was driving, but she wanted to emphasize he was not drinking.
There was also a statement from one of the victims who says Hansen came up to his home to apologize and offer to pay for damages.
“She said, ‘I’m Anna, we’re the Armstrongs, my husband’s Lance, he was just driving maybe too fast around the corner or something,'” the man told police, according to the reports.
Armstrong received citations for failing to report the incident and speeding. He is expected in court in March, TMZ says.
Typical Lance. The guy let’s his girlfriend take the rap for him, but at least he found a girl willing to cover for him. I wonder if they were playing Cards Against Humanity at the party when Lance got drunk.
Photo: Anna Hansen on Twitter
If you have never played “Cards Against Humanity” and you plan on giving it a try, make sure you do it without your aunts and grandparents around. Also, make sure the game hasn’t printed any cards about you.
Cards Against Humanity is essentially “Apples to Apples” for adults. I’m not going to explain the rules of the game, but just know that it involves cards that say stuff like “a defective condom” and “daddy issues.” There’s also a very messed up card about Lance Armstrong, which Lance Armstrong himself has experienced first hand.
Well, this is awkward. I’m sure it was even more awkward for the people Lance was playing with than it was for Lance himself. Good for him for being a sport about it. You have to leave your feelings at the gate when tackling Cards Against Humanity.
If anyone knows a thing or two about overcoming adversity and being hated, it’s Mike Tyson. Iron Mike came from nothing to become one of the greatest fighters to ever live. He also bit a man’s ear off and was one of the most disrespectful athletes of his generation. For those reasons and more, it comes as no surprise that Tyson sympathizes with Lance Armstrong.
During an appearance on WLNY-TV’s The Couch Tuesday morning, Tyson had nothing but nice things to say about the disgraced cyclist.
“He is an awesome human being,” the former heavyweight champ said, via CBS New York. “We’re all human beings, we’re all going to make mistakes. We’re not perfect, and neither is Lance.”
Despite the fact that Armstrong recently admitted to cheating during an interview with Oprah Winfrey, Tyson would not label him a “cheater.” Instead, he urged Armstrong’s friends to support him during this difficult time and help him fight through it.
“I think that people that are his friends should still be his friends,” Iron Mike said. “He’s going to get bashed for awhile, so if you’re truly his friend, try to help him absorb the blows. He’s gonna come out, he’s gonna stay strong, and he’s going to get over this.”
We know one tennis star who couldn’t possibly disagree more, and the same can be said for most people. That’s very nice of Tyson to be so empathetic, but Armstrong is not a victim. He brought all of this on himself, and he destroyed the lives of other people in the process. Not only did he cheat, but he bullied others into doing the same and threatened people into keeping quiet about it. Sorry, Mike. I enjoyed your appearance in the first “Hangover” movie, but you’re way off on this one.
Here is Tyson’s full interview:
Lance Armstrong’s reputation is being destroyed more and more by the day. Most of us never believed him over the years when he vehemently denied using performance-enhancing drugs, but the seven-time Tour de France champion still had plenty of supporters before he admitted to Oprah Winfrey that he cheated. Some of those supporters contributed to Armstrong’s fortune by purchasing his books. Now, they want their money back.
According to the LA Times, a Republican political consultant named Rob Stutzman and a professional chef named Jonathan Wheeler are leading a class action lawsuit against Armstrong regarding sales of his books, “It’s Not About the Bike” and “Every Second Counts.” The lawsuit, which was filed in California federal court on Tuesday, said Stutzman, Wheeler and others “would not have purchased the books had they known the true facts concerning Armstrong’s misconduct and his admitted involvement in a sports doping scandal.”
Armstrong denied doping to win the Tour de France in both books, but his recent admission to Oprah proved that he is a liar.
“Stutzman bought the book in California and read it cover to cover,” the lawsuit said. “Although Stutzman does not buy or read many books, he found Armstrong’s book incredibly compelling and recommended the book to several friends.”
While we certainly feel that one Oprah interview is hardly enough for Armstrong to begin earning forgiveness for the damage he has caused by lying and cheating, I don’t see how the lawsuit could stick. Armstrong certainly isn’t the first person to lie in a book about himself. Does that mean anyone who bought an autobiography can sue the author if they determine he or she lied when writing it? It seems like quite a stretch.
Lance Armstrong may have his sympathizers, but those operating Manly Library in New South Wales, Australia, are not among them.
Holly Byrnes, a News Limited national TV writer, shared a photo on Twitter Sunday of a sign posted in the library that pokes fun at the cyclist.
The sign informs guests that “all non-fiction Lance Armstrong books … will soon be moved to the fiction section.”
While some may be willing to forgive Armstrong now that he confessed to Oprah Winfrey that he doped and used steroids throughout his cycling career, the library is doing its part to remind everyone of how much of a liar he is. Those books glorifying Armstrong are as much of a fairy tale as Lennay Kekua and should be treated as such.
Photo credit: Twitter/Holly Byrnes
H/T Can’t Stop the Bleeding