Sometime soon, Rousimar Palhares will be appearing in front of the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NAC). He's awaiting formal punishment following accusations of eye gouging and ignoring referee instruction following a submission win over Jake Shields at WSOF 22. His September hearing was delayed as his wife was expecting the couple's first child, but it's expected that he'll see his day in front of the hearing panel sometime in October. Once he's there, it sounds like Palhares has his hopes that the'll get a fair shake, so that he can continue his career in the cage:
"The only thing I expect about this hearing is that they judge me as I should be judged. Don't let other little things impact their decision," Palhares told MMAFighting.com. "I'm an athlete and that's how I make a living, so I leave everything in God's hands. Only time will tell. What I know is that I'm a man who fights for a living, to provide for my family, and that's what I want to do."
As far as where he makes a living, though, it looks like WSOF is off the table. As Palhares also made it clear that he wants nothing to do with the promotion going forward.
"They didn't want to talk about anything before the commission's hearing, but I'm not interested in fighting for them," he said. "I asked to be released from my contract or fire me, but they won't. I wanted them to release me so I can go my way, I don't want to be part of this organization anymore. They didn't appreciate me.
"My contract was over 20 days after my last fight, I asked them to release me, and they didn't because they must know I don't want to work for them anymore. Honestly, I don't know what else they expect from me."
It seems Palhares has an awful lot riding on the outcome of his appearance before the NAC. That could be big problem for him, as he is someone who has been punished for perceived and actual blatant rule violations during competition over and over again. Palhares first came up against the New Jersey Athletic Commission back in 2010, for his win over Tomasz Drwal, landing a 90-day suspension for holding the fight ending sub too long. He was again suspended, this time for 9 months, by the UFC itself following a failed drug test at an Australia show back in 2013. And following a third incident and 120 day suspension from the Brazilian athletic commission, at Fight Night 29 (in a leg lock win over Mike Pierce), he was released from the UFC.
However, none of that was in Nevada, so it's hard to know just how much of it they'll take into consideration. If the commission looks at the totality of his career in front of various regulating bodies, Palhares could find himself sitting on the sidelines and stuck under a suspended contract for quite a while.