Although most fans and pundits assume that Wanderlei Silva will be severely disciplined when he appears in front of the Nevada State Athletic Commission later this month, his lawyer is certain that will not be the case.
Ross Goodman appeared on The MMA Hour, where he discussed his client's upcoming hearing in front of the commission and why he believes they are limited in their ability to reprimand him for his actions.
"I think everybody understands the fact that you can't discipline somebody who is not licensed before you. It's just as plain as that," he continued. "The actual complaint is that Wanderlei violated their drug policy, and if you look at the statute, you look at the section that they're trying to discipline Wanderlei under a clear state that you have to be a licensee."
The incident in question took place earlier in the year, when Silva refused a random drug test at his gym, which subsequently led to him being removed from the marquee match-up against Chael Sonnen at UFC 175.
According to Goodman, the fact that Silva was not licensed under the NSAC during the time they attempted to administer the drug test makes all the difference - even though his client eventually admitted to taking a banned substance (diuretic).
"It makes all the difference in the world. It expressly says you have to be a licensee. This is plain as simple as that," he said. "(The commission) takes one section out of context when says ‘a person.' Before I even explain that, if they valid what he's saying, the commission would have the authority to discipline anybody that's a person. That is absurd. That's unreasonable.
"Unlike Chael or other people, (Silva) had not signed a bout agreement, he wasn't under contract, and he wasn't a licensee. You can't go have somebody to submit to a test because they're potentially going to a fight on a feature card."
Goodman suggested that instead of attempting to punish Wanderlei when he is outside of their jurisdiction, the NSAC should focus on amending their guidelines so that this sort of incident is not repeated in the future.
"So, instead of trying to accuse Wanderlei, I think the issue should be how come the commission is pursuing something which is, in its state, clearly wrong. Taking action against someone who isn't licensed before them. What they should do it take this as a learning lesson and go ahead and make feature agreements, or amendment rules, to try prevent that from happening.
"It's a shame that it needs to go that far," he said. "This is a very simple issue, they should just learn from it and not go forward with the disciplinary complain because they don't have jurisdiction."
Transcription taken from MMAFighting.com.