Romero lawsuit payout reduced by $6m

Yoel Romero at a press event for UFC 241. | Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC

Yoel Romero’s damages from a successful lawsuit have taken a hit.

Former UFC title challenger Yoel Romero got a huge win in the courts back in 2019 when he successfully sued Goldstar Performance Products for $27.45 million over a tainted supplement that caused him to fail a USADA drug test.

An investigation proved that the substance Romero tested positive for was present in the supplements made by Goldstar, despite not being listed on the label.

On Thursday the Superior Court of New Jersey issued their final ruling on the case, which included a revision of how much damages Romero is eligible to receive from Goldstar. According to that court, the monetary amount Romero stands to gain is less than the $27.45 million he had initially claimed.

Romero’s original claim for damages broke down to include $3.15 million for ‘lost wages’, $3 million for ‘reputable harm’ and $3 million for ‘emotional damage’. Romero’s legal team then tripled those amounts due to language in New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act.

MMA Fighting reports, citing Jason Morrin of Geragos & Geragos, that the courts have not agreed with the assessment that all of those categories of damages warrant having that tripling effect applied to them.

Though the court permitted the lost wages damages to remain at $9.45 million, it rejected the claim that the amount for emotional damage should be tripled. The amount for reputable harm will be discussed in court at a later date.

As things stand Romero is now eligible for $12.35 million in damages. The forthcoming trial could award him another $9 million or $3 million.

Romero, a former Olympic medallist, fought for the UFC between 2013 and 2020. During that run he challenged for both the interim UFC middleweight title and UFC middleweight title.

He lost his first interim title shot to Robert Whittaker in 2017. He won his second interim shot, versus Luke Rockhold, but because he missed weight he was not eligible to take home that belt.

Romero then missed weight for a full middleweight title bout, versus Robert Whittaker in 2018. He lost that bout by split decision.

After a loss to Paulo Costa in 2019, Romero was awarded another UFC middleweight title shot, this time against Israel Adesanya. He made weight for that contest and lost the fight by unanimous decision. He was cut from the UFC shortly after.

Romero then signed with Bellator. He was expected to fight Anthony Johnson in the first round of a light heavyweight grand prix. However, Romero was pulled from that fight due to not getting medical clearance over an eye issue.

He is expected to make his Bellator debut later this year.

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