While Nate Diaz didn’t win his epic rematch with Conor McGregor at UFC 202, he did win the respect of his opponent and a pretty hefty pay cheque for his efforts – but it may be a while before we see him fight again.
The MMA fighter could be in hot water with the UFC’s anti-doping agency for smoking a cannibis compound during Saturday’s post-fight press conference.
Diaz was vaping on the dais and, when asked by reporters what he was vaping, said it was CBD, or cannibidiol oil, according to MMA Fighting.
It’s CBD. It helps with the healing process and inflammation, stuff like that. So you want to get these for before and after the fights, training. It’ll make your life a better place.
Cannibidiol is one of 113 active cannabinoids in cannabis, which are banned in-competition by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Code over a certain threshold. According to MMA Fighting, the ban is in place for the six hours before and after a fight. Considering Diaz’s appearance with media was shortly after his fight with McGregor, he was well within that timeframe.
And the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) is now investigating it. Spokesperson Ryan Madden told MMA Fighting in a statement: “I can confirm that USADA is aware of the situation and is currently gathering information in order to determine the next appropriate steps.”
As Diaz had already been drug tested before the press conference, he likely thought he was in the clear. But the company can suspend fighters for up to a year for marijuana use, and USADA could consider Diaz’s admission as admitted use, which is the same as a failed test.
The ban wouldn’t be out of the ordinary for a Diaz brother though, as Nate’s older brother and fellow MMA fighter Nick had already been given a five-year ban in September 2015 after multiple positive tests for pot. Luckily for the fighter and his fans, that was reduced to 18 months, plus a $100,000 fine after widespread outcry, the Washington Post reports.
Considering his use didn’t affect the fight, hopefully USADA exercises caution when considering whether to issue a ban.