UFC’s Nick Diaz fails drug test again

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Welterweight star Nick Diaz may want to get another chance for taking on the man who won over him in the Ultimate Fighting Championship this past Saturday, but it turns out the drug test has scratched him off that possibility.

The tests done for the UFC 143 show last Saturday in Las Vegas showed Diaz testing positive for marijuana metabolites, which the Nevada Athletic Commission revealed on Thursday. This was Diaz’s second time to test positive for the drug, the first having been after a 2007 match, also in Las Vegas.

A hearing has yet to be scheduled for April in order for a specific penalty to be decided for Diaz, said executive director Keith Kizer of the Nevada commission.

In the main event last weekend, Diaz lost to Carlos Condit via a unanimous decision. The UFC had looked forward to hosting a rematch given the close fight, and Condit had been agreeable to a sequel.

Interestingly, Cesar Gracie, lead trainer and manager to Diaz, dismissed the idea earlier in the week, giving a slight hint of his fighter’s not being able to accept a match anytime soon. He told USA Today that Condit had accepted the possibility of a rematch because he was confident there would not be one.

Diaz is currently the number 2 welterweight in the consensus rankings of USA Today/SB Nation, although his career had been interrupted several times before by drug tests.

After the 2007 showdown forcing Takanori Gomi to tap out to a gogoplata submission, which was extremely rare, when Diaz tested positive, he was suspended by Nevada for six months. The fight had its official result changed to a no-contest.

In August 2009, the California State Athletic Commission would not give Diaz license to fight for a Strikeforce title, because he did not come for a drug test that was called for on short notice. During that time, Gracie said that Diaz’s party thought California regulators had agreed to a handshake deal that precluded random testing.

Gracie said that Diaz typically needed 10 days for flushing out the marijuana from his system, so that he would pass the drug tests.

In many other ways, Diaz has continued to be difficult to promote. In addition to drugs, he is known for having had a few brawls following matches, a few press events he had skipped, regular tardiness for conference calls, and a number of missed fights.

Dana White, UFC president, said that Diaz would not be a problem if he would only observe commonly accepted rules of behaviour.

White gave a brief statement on Thursday saying he was “beyond disappointed” by the drug test results, adding that he left the decision of a penalty to the Nevada commission.

When he beat Diaz, Condit became the interim title holder for the UFC welterweight, as 170-pound Georges St. Pierre is still recovering from a knee injury. The champion is not expected to come back until October or November, which was why the UFC had intended to give Condit another bout instead of having him wait a few months for his next fight, and a rematch with Diaz would have been a lucrative choice.

Of course, the drug test incident most likely indicates another suspension for Diaz, rendering the match impossible.

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