Nick Diaz suspended for 12 months by Nevada State Athletic CommissionPosted on May 21, 2012, 04:50 PM by Mike Drahota
Today Nick Diaz finally appeared before the NSAC to decide his fate stemming from a failed UFC 143 drug test for marijuana metabolites. After much back-and-forth between the Nevada general attorney's office and the legal team of Diaz led by Ronald Goldman, the commission decided to take serious disciplinary action and suspend the controversial fighter for a full twelve months. On top of that, 30 percent of his fight purse was taken in addition to his fight bonus.
This may come as a shock to some, seeing as Alistair Overeem was only suspended for nine months recently due to elevated Testosterone, and Chael Sonnen received a six-month suspension after UFC 117. Perhaps the legal steps taken against the commission by Diaz to claim wrongdoing in not offering him a hearing within 45 days had something to do with this, or even his claim stating that he never lied on the pre-fight drug questionnaire may have had an effect on the outcome. It is tough to discern at this point, but the bottom line is that one of the best Welterweights on the planet is now officially on the shelf for an entire year. Diaz claimed his bout with Condit was his last fight anyway, but if he was coming back, this obviously puts a serious damper on his UFC career.
It should be noted that Diaz did have his amazing submission over Takanori Gomi changed to a no-contest after failing that fight's drug test for marijuana as well, and that he told the commission he would "never do it again" at that time. Many will soon be arguing that his punishment was too harsh, but athletic commissions frown heavily upon being lied to. What are your opinions on the outcome? Does Nick Diaz deserve such a harsh punishment or not? Are the testing priorities of the NSAC becoming blurred, with priorities in different areas, or are they spot-on? Drug testing is a huge issue in MMA right now, but it appears that the punishments handed down are always open to a huge amount of interpretation.
In any case, a great fighter will now practice his trade elsewhere, leaving MMA fans worldwide to wonder what could have been in the UFC's Welterweight division for 2012 and beyond.