Former Strikeforce welterweight champ and UFC welterweight title challenger Nick Diaz will soon be able to fight again.
The elder Diaz brother has accepted a one-year sanction after failing to appear for three mandated United States Anti-Doping Agency drug tests, a violation of the agency’s “UFC Whereabouts Policy”. This suspension is retroactive to April 19, 2017, which means that it will be over on April 19, 2018. After that date, Diaz will be free to begin competing in the UFC again, should he so choose.
USADA announced today that Nick Diaz, of Stockton, Calif., has accepted a one-year sanction for a violation of the UFC® Anti-Doping Policy resulting from three unsuccessful test attempts during a 12-month period.
Like all UFC athletes, Diaz, 34, is a member of the UFC Registered Testing Pool and is therefore subject to certain Whereabouts responsibilities, which allow him to be located for out-of-competition testing. Diaz failed to be available for three tests at the locations provided in his Whereabouts Filings. The first two failures occurred in the second and third quarters of 2016, while the third occurred in the first quarter of 2017. Under the UFC Anti-Doping Policy, the accumulation of three Whereabouts Failures within a 12-month period constitutes an anti-doping policy violation.
Diaz’s one-year period of ineligibility began on April 19, 2017, the date on which his third Whereabouts Failure was declared against him. During his period of ineligibility, Diaz remained subject to no-advance-notice testing by USADA and did not accumulate any additional Whereabouts Failures. As such, Diaz will be eligible to return to competition upon the completion of his sanction on April 19, 2018.
While Nick Diaz will technically be allowed to fight before this month is over, that is far from an indication that he will. That said, he remains one of the sought after opponents in the game for welterweights and middleweights alike!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 4/9/2018.