The Nevada State Athletic Commission has come down hard on Wanderlei Silva for avoiding a drug test for his July matchup in UFC 175 against Chael Sonnen. According to MMA Junkie, he was issued an indefinite suspension today in addition to a fine of 35% of his expected purse for the fight (amounting to a $70,000 fine). The NSAC order is the equivalent of a lifetime ban from competing in the state of Nevada. Silva was not present for the hearing, but his lawyer Ross Goodman announced that he will likely appeal the order.
Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
During a June 17 hearing, the NSAC’s sample collector and executive director testified that Silva didn’t answer the door at his Las Vegas home and evaded the collector at his nearby gym. After avoiding the drug test, Wanderlei Silva and Ross Goodman claimed that he should not be asked to submit to a drug test prior to obtaining a license to compete in the state. Not long after the initial confrontation with NSAC authorities, Silva came back to explain he was concerned that the diuretics he was taking for anti-inflamitory purposes would count against him in the test. Regardless, Silva’s lawyer claimed that NSAC had no jurisdiction to take disciplinary action against him because he was not yet a licensed fighter.
We won’t know whether the diuretic drugs he was using to treat his injured wrist would have counted against him, but we now know that the commission has the power to test athletes regardless of their licensed status. Wanderlei Silva announced his retirement last Friday, but that did not stop NSAC from making an example out of him. With Ross Goodman’s attempts to appeal the order, no one’s sure if Wanderlei will get the full fine for his UFC 175 fight. What we do know is that with the punishment of Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier in addition to Wanderlei Silva’s ruling, NSAC has demonstrated the full extant of its disciplinary power.