Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight Nick Diaz and his legal team are gearing up for a hearing in front of Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) to answer for a failed drug test (marijuana), following his unanimous decision loss to Anderson Silva at UFC 183 back in January.
A hearing that could happen as early as August or September of this year, after it was initially postponed to afford the defense further preparation time.
According to a report from MMA Fighting, Nick's attorney, Lucas Middlebrook, was in the middle of discussions with Nevada deputy attorney general Christopher Eccles over a month ago about a possible settlement in the case.
That said, Middlebrook says he still may have to present a case for Diaz if a settlement is reached, based on the fact that boxer John Molina had to do the same after he reached a settlement with the commission.
And he'll need a strong case, too, as this marks the third time Diaz failed for marijuana.
This past May, the NSAC increased penalties for drug offenders. Among the harsher punishments is a three-year suspension for earning your third strike. Middlebrook, however, doesn't believe the new rules will apply to his client since his failed drug test occurred back in February.
"My best guess is that it would not have retroactive application given that the complaint was filed against Nick prior to those rulings. That's a pretty basic concept in legislation. I wouldn't think they would be bound by those regulations as it pertains to Nick."
According to Middlebrook, communication and negotiations with Eccles have gone ice cold in the past weeks.
Nick's previous failed tests came after bouts against Takanori Gomi at PRIDE 33 in 2007 and Carlos Condit five years later at UFC 143. He also tried to fight those charges back in 2012, to no avail.
Third time's the charm?