March 22, 2017
Conor McGregor’s punishment from the Nevada State Athletic Commission due to his involvement in a pre-UFC 202 news conference has been reduced. The NSAC approved the settlement on Wednesday.
McGregor is fined $25,000 and ordered to complete 25 hours of community service within six months in addition to paying court costs. The original punishmen t was $150,000 and 50 hours of community service.
McGregor filed a lawsuit in Clark County, Nevada seeking judicial review of the original punishment. The lawsuit was the normal means of appealing a ruling from an administrative body.
The commission voted to re-hear McGregor’s case today during the NSAC’s monthly meeting. McGregor did not appear but was represented by his attorney Jennifer Goldstein. McGregor had met with NSAC chair Anthony Marnell and NSAC executive director Bob Bennett earlier this month which led to the re-hearings.
In December, Nate Diaz reached a settlement with the NSAC for a $50,000 fine and 50 hours of community service.
This makes good on a horrible overreach by the commission. Diaz should also look for a re-hearing on his fine and community service as well. It also paves the way for clearing McGregor to obtain a boxing license in Nevada for the possibility of a fight with Floyd Mayweather. This would obviously benefit Nevada if (and that’s a big if) that fight actually happens.
February 16, 2017
MMA Fighting reports that Conor McGregor requests a rehearing of his NAC disciplinary case. In an unprecedented move, the NAC plans on putting McGregor’s request up for a vote at the March 22nd meeting. Notably, NAC executive director and chairman Anthony Marnell recommend the request be granted.
According to a statement released by the NAC on Tuesday, McGregor met with Marnell and Bennett.
In October, the NAC determined McGregor’s original fine to be $75,000 plus 50 hours community service and a public service announcement that would be $75,000 in value.
Since then, McGregor has filed for a judicial review of the NAC ruling in Clark County Superior Court.
As we all know, McGregor is aiming for a boxing match with Floyd Mayweather. With the intent that the matchup happens in Las Vegas, McGregor would have to obtain a license. However, the disciplinary fine precludes McGregor from receiving the boxing license.
A rehearing is a clear indication that the NAC wants to reduce the disciplinary charges for McGregor. Moreover, they want to grant him a license so, if a fight with Mayweather actually occurs, it can happen in Vegas. This rehearing is not how due process should occur as the appeal should go to the court. But, if McGregor agrees to dismiss the judicial review in lieu of settling the case at the NAC, I’m sure that could happen.
December 15, 2016
Nate Diaz has settled a complaint filed the Nevada State Athletic Commission for his role in the bottle-throwing incident at the UFC 202 pre-fight press conference.
Per ESPN’s Brett Okamoto:
Nate Diaz has agreed to pay 2.5% of his $2mil UFC 202 purse for the water throwing, so $50k. Plus 50 hours community service.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) December 15, 2016
Diaz apologized for the incident in his Answer to the NSAC Complaint. He did state that he “lightly tossed a half empty plastic water bottle in the direction of his opponent [McGregor] without the intent to strike anyone and, in fact, the bottle did not strike anyone.” He had requested community service or suspension in lieu of monetary penalty.
The settlement agreement does not include a suspension but a $50,000 fine which is similar to the amount given to Conor McGregor with the exception that McGregor must do a public service announcement. The settlement saves Diaz from further legal issues related to the incident.
December 12, 2016
It appears that settlements have been brokered on behalf of 3 UFC fighters and the Nevada Athletic Commission. MMA Fighting reports that the NAC announced Nate Diaz, Jon Jones and Brock Lesnar are scheduled to appear for hearing on their “proposed adjudication agreements” at the December 15th commission meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Jones settled with the NAC on a one year suspension which would put him back in the Octagon by July 6, 2017 at the earliest. He also was given a one year suspension by USADA.
Diaz hearing stems from his role in the UFC 202 pre-fight press conference.
Lesnar’s complaint stems from two failed USADA drug tests after UFC 200.
The anticipated settlements reflect the fact that no one wants to test the uncertainty of the punishment that the NAC may hand out. Conor McGregor has filed a Petition for Review of his NAC fine of $75,000. Depending on the length of the settlements, it likely means that the fighters will be able to plan their next fights. In the case of Lesnar, it’s not clear whether he may fight in the UFC again.
December 8, 2016
MMA Fighting reports that Jon Jones has reached a settlement with the Nevada State Athletic Commission and will serve a one year suspension. Jones will be able to return this summer to the UFC octagon.
Jones avoids a hearing before the NAC which could have added on to a USADA suspension handed down to him in October. A three-person arbitration panel handed down a one year suspension for Jones as he was the first UFC fighter to take USADA to arbitration. The panel determined that Jones acted recklessly when he took a Cialis-like sexual enhancement pill without knowledge of its contents. Jones had hoped that the arbitration panel would have been more lenient in its sentencing as a one year suspension was the original requested penalty for Jones.
Jones was to have appeared before the NAC next week at the commission’s monthly hearing. Jones or his representatives will be there, but to confirm the agreed upon settlement, rather than deal with a punishment.
The one year suspension appears to be retroactive to the date of the discovery of his USADA drug test results, July 6, 2016.
The settlement ensures that Jones will have a possibility to return to the UFC at about the same time that the UFC will run its annual International Fight Week. This should/could mean the long awaited fight between Jones-Cormier could occur then assuming Jones stays out of trouble and Cormier remains injury-free. With today’s news, Jones avoids the possibility of an additional suspension and/or prolonged legal battle.
December 8, 2016
Conor McGregor has filed a Petition for Judicial Review in Clark County, Nevada for his fine levied by the Nevada State Athletic Commission for his water-bottle throwing incident this past August.
Per MMA Junkie, McGregor filed the Petition for Judicial Review on November 18, 2016 per Clark County Court Records. McGregor is represented by Jennifer Goldstein. The Nevada State Athletic Commission is represented by Caroline Bateman.
McGregor reportedly made $3 million from UFC 202 not counting undisclosed bonuses or PPV points.
The state attorney general originally recommended a $25,000 fine but the commission believed that was not sufficient.
The appeal of a commission ruling results in filing a lawsuit in the superior court which is what McGregor has done. You might recall that Wanderlei Silva filed a similar petition for review in 2015 related to his lifetime ban. The state court ruled in Silva’s favor, but the order was to remand back to the commission. Silva appealed to the state Supreme Court but that did not work out. There is potential for McGregor’s commission penalty to be reversed but it will likely mean that the court will send it back to the commission for to re-determine the penalty. MMA Payout will keep you posted.
October 23, 2016
MMA Fighting reports that Pat Lundvall’s appointment on the Nevada Athletic Commission will end at the end of October. Lundvall has served for a total of 9 years for the commission.
Lundvall, an attorney in Nevada, has been in a central figure in some of the more recent discipline hearings before the commission. Most recently, she was a factor in the discipline hearing involving Conor McGregor. Instead of accepting a recommendation from the state attorney general of a $25,000 fine and community service, Lundvall motioned for a $150,000 penalty which included the value of a public service announcement (PSA)which McGregor was ordered to film.
After initial reports that the fine was for $150,000, it was clarified that the amount was $75,000 and the value of the PSA was $75,000.
Lundvall was also a central commissioner in the hearing of Nick Diaz in which he was assessed a 5 year ban which was eventually reduced.
Lundvall’s departure will be met with a sigh of relief by some within the MMA community as some of the decisions spearheaded by Lundvall seemed punitive and without much rationale behind them. The Diaz punishment comes to mind. Even McGregor’s punishment seemed out of ordinary and it appeared that it was done to show the commission’s muscle rather than anything else.
October 17, 2016
MMA Fighting reports that Nevada’s Athletic Commission’s executive director Bob Bennett has clarified the fine assessed to Conor McGregor from his bottle-throwing incident. He states that the fine is $75,000 and not the $150,000 as previously reported.
Despite the fact that the $150,000 number was indicated at an open hearing of the commission, Bennett clarified that the fine was $75,000 and the value of a public-service announcement McGregor must do for the commission is valued at $75,000.
McGregor reportedly made $3 million from UFC 202 not counting undisclosed bonuses or PPV points.
The state attorney general originally recommended a $25,000 fine, 25 hours of community service and media training. The commissioners believed that amount was not enough.
McGregor was not a fan of the $150,000 fine stating that he would not fight in Nevada in the foreseeable future.
The backtracking to clarify the fine and then blame media seems like a mishandling of the situation by the NSAC and a way to reduce the fine without drawing an appeal. The $75,000 value seems like it was pulled out of the air without any evidence that a PSA would cost this much.
October 10, 2016
ESPN reports that the Nevada State Athletic Commission has fined Conor McGregor $150,000 for his part of a water bottle-throwing incident at the pre-fight press conference leading up to UFC 202.
The commission decided to fine McGregor 5% of his fight purse and the funds will be disbursed between the state’s general fund and an anti-bullying campaign proposed by McGregor and his attorney at the hearing. In addition to the fine, McGregor is to do PSAs to benefit children. The Featherweight champion attended the hearing via phone.
The attorney general’s recommendation was to fine McGregor $25,000, community service and media training. But that was not enough for the commission. Their original proposal was to fine McGregor 10% of his fight purse, which would have amounted to $300,000. However, the commission deemed it too hefty a fine. Instead, it came to $150,000 plus the community service.
The arrival of the punishment seemed to be something done on the fly and without much logical reasoning behind it. While the AG recommendation seemed too low to them, they felt that they needed to exact more out of McGregor which was 6 times the recommended amount. Certainly, they could have suspended McGregor from fighting in the state to send a message. But, they realize that he’s set records in the state for attendance and gate in Nevada and that would be detrimental to the state. Although McGregor can appeal the punishment by appealing in court, it seems unlikely.
September 21, 2016
MMA Junkie has obtained the NSAC complaints against Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor as it relates to the dustup between the two and Diaz’s camp at the UFC 203 pre-fight press conference.
As you may recall, the press conference ended abruptly after McGregor showed up late and Diaz left soon thereafter. Verbal exchanges were made and water bottles were thrown. The NSAC has filed complaints against the two.
The complaints, which mirror one another, cite NAC 467.885 which governs discipline for licensed fighters within the state. It also cites NRS 467.158 which gives the commission the power to penalize a licensed fighter up to $250,000 for “disciplinary action [that] does not relate to a contest or exhibition of unarmed combat…” Since this was a press conference, the commission would use this rule to govern the altercation. It also cites NRS 467.110 which allows the commission to suspend or revoke the license of a fighter.
Look for these two complaints to be settled and/or a stiff fine for both Diaz and McGregor. Do not look for a suspension of any kind. In reality, the commission will not want to suspend either fighter unless its known they will not fight in the state for the next 6 months or so. While there is a need to penalize the two, it’s clear that the commission will not want to harm itself by suspending two of the top grossing fighters for the UFC.