Wanderlei Silva receives three year suspension from Nevada Athletic Commission after re-hearing

By Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief

The next chapter in the Wanderlei Silva saga came on Wednesday, as the Nevada Athletic Commission handed down a three-year suspension for evading a drug test in May of 2014.

Silva’s case was sent back to the commission after their initial lifetime ban was struck down by an appeals court for being “arbitrary and capricious,” and after significant delays a hearing was finally held on Wednesday. Silva’s attorney Ross Goodman attempted to once again argue the case that the commission did not have jurisdiction over Silva at the time they attempted to collect a sample, but the argument became a non-starter during the latest hearing.

While Goodman then argued for a two-year suspension, the commission’s attorney was recommending up to a four year term, something supported by commissioner Pat Lundvall. Ultimately, the commission voted on a three year term dating back to May 24, 2014, making Silva eligible to seek out a fighting license after May 25, 2017.

This won’t be the end of Silva’s tale, however, as Goodman is expected to bring their case to the Nevada Supreme Court. This definitive suspension term was necessary in order for that case to move forward, and they’re planning to do just that.

Penick’s Analysis: It’s unlikely they’re going to be able to successfully get Silva cleared via their appeal to the supreme court, but regardless it now sets a definitive timetable on his suspension. Of course, if he should choose to forego any future of fighting in the U.S., he could also simply fight in Japan for Rizin where there wouldn’t be any issue with getting booked. At this stage, three years isn’t surprising, but their continued hardline stance against those who happen to challenge them continues to be a bad look for the NAC.

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