Yesterday afternoon, news surfaced that former Strikeforce welterweight champ and UFC welterweight title challenger Nick Diaz had 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,” a USADA release on the matter read.
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.
As one of the game’s most exciting and popular fighters, it should come as no surprise that the callouts of the elder Diaz brother began almost immediately.
One of the first fighters to call out the Stockton-born fighter was always-entertaining UFC welterweight “Platinum” Mike Perry. Perry made his callout of Diaz on Twitter, offering to smoke weed with him all week ahead of time too.
— Platinum Mike Perry (@PlatinumPerry) April 10, 2018
“If [Nick Diaz] wants to fight I’d be down to welcome him back,” Perry said. “We can smoke weed all week together and I’d still put these hands on him.”
Interestingly, Perry also called out another welterweight fan favorite in Emil Meek—and almost immediately got a positive response.
— Platinum Mike Perry (@PlatinumPerry) April 5, 2018
Let’s fucking gooooooo💥⚔️
Battle of the year!
— Emil Valhalla Meek (@emilvalhalla) April 5, 2018
Who do you want to see Mike Perry fight next? Do you think he’d make a good welcome committee for a returning Nick Diaz?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 4/10/2018.