While he's only had one fight this year, 2012 has been anything but uninteresting for UFC Welterweight Nick Diaz. After losing an interim title bout to Carlos Condit, Diaz failed his post fight drug test due to marijuana metabolites. Although he brought in an attorney and offered a reasonable defense in his April hearing, the NSAC upheld his suspension and fine. Then in September, Diaz's attorney Ross Goodman filed for a judicial review of the proceedings.
NSAC executive Keith Kizer did an interview with Middle Easy where he explained how the review is progressing:
It is (still ongoing), (Cesar Gracie's) right. The attorney general's office, on behalf of the commission, filed their answering brief on Monday the 29th. So I think Nick and his attorney will have until the end of this month to file or the beginning of next month to file their brief. Then the judge will set it for a hearing. So I assume sometime in December. It's kind of tough with the holidays. But I assume sometime in December the judge will have a hearing. And then the attorney general on behalf of the state and Mr. Goodman on behalf of Nick will have a hearing.
So, according to Kizer's timeline, if the judge decides in favor of Diaz, he can hope to shave a little over a month off his suspension and possibly get a refund on his $80K fine. This would also make Diaz available for the Super Bowl weekend bout that Josh Koscheck has been talking so much about. If not, Diaz will serve out the remainder of his suspension, set to last until February 4.
Kizer also talked about his relationship with Diaz's manager Cesar Gracie. He said he's had a good relationship with Cesar in the past and expects that to continue in the future even though he had to reject Gracie's invitation for a conversation about Diaz's situation. He added that any such discussion had to go through Ross Goodman who never contacted Kizer. When the topic of therapeutic use exemptions (TUE) for marijuana came up, Kizer didn't shy away. He said the NSAC would "certainly" consider it if a fighter "had all his ducks in a row."