Roy Nelson is not getting off the hook for his controversial post-fight antics at UFC Fight Night 95.
The MMA veteran lightly kicked referee John McCarthy after knocking out Anotnio ‘BigFoot’ Silva in the second round, claiming that McCarthy issued a late stoppage and let Silva take too much unnecessary damage.
‘Big Country’ did apologize for his behavior at the post-fight press conference but said that he ‘wouldn’t take it back’.
On Wednesday, it was announced that the Brazilian Superior Justice Court of MMA (STJDMMA) suspended Nelson for nine months and issued a $24,000 fine, per MMA Fighting’s Guilherme Cruz.
STJDMMA punished Nelson for assault and unethical behavior, claiming that "the athlete has an obligation to respect the honor, preserve the health, and physical and moral integrity of the referee.”
In his defense, Nelson stated that he didn’t intend to hurt McCarthy and said he was afraid of the way some Brazilian fans acted at the ceremonial weigh-ins in Brasilia, Brazil. The kick did not cause any damage to McCarthy, who has been refereeing for 22 years and made his debut at UFC 2.
Nelson will have a chance to reduce his suspension to six months and reduce his fine to $13,700 if he apologizes to McCarthy at a press conference or in the Octagon.
STJDMMA stated that the maximum penalty for a case like this is a 25-month suspension and $40,000 fine, but the court decided to reduce Nelson’s suspension and fine due to a lack of intent to cause harm.
The suspension, retroactive Sept. 29, will force Nelson out of action until June 29 unless he apologizes to McCarthy by Dec. 31.