It seems is if the entire mixed martial arts (MMA) world is up in arms over the Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC) decision to suspend Nick Diaz for a ridiculous five years following his third failed drug test for marijuana metabolites after his UFC 183 loss to Anderson Silva (which later became a no contest when ‘The Spider’ was suspended himself).
Nearly every big name in the fight game has weighed in with their opinion about the Diaz scandal; that is, except for UFC president Dana White. After releasing precious little info but a quick ‘there’s nothing I can do,’ the UFC head man finally spoke up via Submission Radio at the UFC 193 presser Down Under to give his take on the situation, and he didn’t exactly support Diaz. Check it out:
“We’ve been here (Australia). When this thing went down, we’ve been here. And many people who know me and know the sport, I’ve been a very reactionary person in the past. I’m a little older and a little wiser now. I don’t just react, I have to know all the facts. I don’t know all the facts, you know. When you hear this – because it’s so jarring when you hear this. It’s like, wait a minute, this guy was suspended for five years and got a 150,000 dollar fine for marijuana?
“So you can completely take that out of context too, but that’s his third offense. It’s his third offense, and let’s all be honest here, Nick Diaz doesn’t exactly play by the rules. You know, listen, everybody would love to hang out and smoke weed all day and not play by the rules. It sounds awesome. It’s sounds like, you know, it sounds like the great thing to do (laughs). But in reality, you can’t do that, and especially when you’re dealing with the government. Nick was also in a situation where Nick hadn’t paid his taxes in a long time, you know. You can’t do that either. So it has to be more than ‘hey the guy smoked weed and…’”
Many are understandably on Diaz side, but in an attempt to be a calmer voice of reason for once, he chose to take the more sobering perspective and state the facts that Diaz has spent much of his career running afoul of government agencies as the sport’s biggest anti-hero.
Yet aside from that, there were some clear and significant discrepancies in the three post-fight tests he took earlier this year, as two returned negative results under the allowed 150 ng/ml while the final test produced a gross failure of over 700 ng/ml. This means Diaz’ lawyer Lucas Middlebrook will be taking the Commission to court in what could be a lengthy appeal.
As for White, he doesn’t know all the facts, but will collect them and result a further statement once he has all the details:
“I don’t know all the facts yet. We’re leaving tomorrow morning. When I get home, I will hear all the facts. I promise you, you will hear from me soon on the Nick Diaz situation. I have to figure out all the facts first.”
This new version of Dana isn’t going to overreact on the massive hot topic of Diaz, and there’s a lot of information to be absorbed to get to the bottom of the testing controversy. Like he said, however, there’s nothing White can do no matter what he ends up surmising.
Have we seen the last of this polarizing bad boy about whom Dana White also said was never willing to ‘play the game?’