‘Disappointed’ Harrison denies HGH allegations


Pittsburg Steeler’s five time Pro Bowl linebacker James Harrison denied allegations that he received and took banned substance after being named in Al-Jezeera America’s documentary “The Dark Side.”

In a post game interview with Pittsburgh news outlet WXPI Steelers linebacker James Harrison said he did not know pharmacist Charlie Sly who allegedly supplied the two-time All-Pro with Delta-2.  Delta-2 is a steroid that increases strength and is designed to beat drug testing.

Harrison’s name was mentioned along with Philadelphia Phillies first basemen Ryan Howard, the Washington Nationals Ryan Zimmerman and Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.  Manning, like Harrison, also strongly denounced allegations that he used the growth hormone HGH.

Related Story: Peyton Manning Linked To Al-Jazeera Report For HGH Use

No Proof, No Problems  

This developing story has the magnitude to tarnish the future of Al-Jazeera America’s sports reporting or destroy the legacy of the 37-year-old outside linebacker.  Since the initial report, Harrison has taken a clear stance off innocence, which is supported by the fact he has never tested positive for steroids.

When Harrison was asked about the reports by the Huffington Post and Al-Jazeera he replied, “James Harrison is strong cause he works, that’s why.”  

Harrison added that he was “disappointed” and spoke strong condemnation of the all accusations. 

Playing one of the most physically demanding positions at such a high level in the NFL means that Harrison must be in tip-top shape.  A vital part of the Steelers’ defense, at his age, is an accomplishment in of itself.  

Harrison is currently the second oldest defensive player in the NFL, trumped only by Oakland Raider Charles Woodson, 39, who will retire at the end of this season. 

Since 2004, when Harrison turned 30, he has played at least 10 games each season and recorded over 45 tackles in five of those eight years.

The Dark Side of Facts

 “The Dark Side” was not an intended witch hunt of steroids in the NFL, it was intended to shed light on the issue of doping in sports globally.  In fact, the hour long documentary only mentions Harrison briefly, captured in a secret recording of Sly by Al-Jareeza’s undercover reporter Liam Collins.

"“I supply him (Harrison) with some stuff,” Sly said when Collins asked if Harrison was in the Delta-2 club, “Yeah, he (Harrison) takes it.”"

Another fact is that the conversation about Harrison lasted for a mere 75 second, a minute and 15 second.  At no other point is Harrison directly referred to in “The Dark Side.”

Without additional information, and only one brief mention in “The Dark Side”, it would be gravely unfair to label Harrison as a steroid user, simply because there is no actual proof.