UFC 202’s main event between Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz was one of the UFC’s greatest ever fights and three weeks on, it is still giving us something to talk about.
The fight itself and has been analysed to death and while MMA’s biggest stars and the media agree that the majority decision victory by McGregor was the correct result, Diaz and his fans continue to dispute and complain.
Now, focus is quickly switching from the fight itself to the post-fight press conference, not for what was said but rather for what Diaz was smoking.
The beanie wearing Diaz was seen publicly vaping during his interview and when queried about what it was, his response was,
“CBD oil. It helps with the healing process and inflammation, stuff like that.”
CBD, Cannabidiol, is the substance in cannabis that is responsible for the drug’s psychotropic effect and is classed as a cannabinoid, currently banned by the UFC’s Anti-Doping Policy.
At the time, it was reported by numerous outlets, including MMAFighting, that USADA, the US Anti-Doping Agency, along with the Nevada Athletic Commission (NAC), had opened an investigation into the incident.
Now, MMAFighting’s in-the-know journalist Ariel Helwani has issued an update via his Twitter account stating that the NAC has dropped it’s investigation against Diaz since the vaping incident took place after the fight and post-drug testing.
However, Helwani confirmed that USADA are continuing to pursue a potential case against the Stockton fighter.
NAC tells me they will not impose a penalty on Nate Diaz for “vape-gate”, since it happened post-drug test. USADA still looking into it.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) September 8, 2016
USADA are, excuse the pun, notoriously strict when it comes to potential doping violations and the fact that the anti-doping agency is continuing it’s investigations suggests that Diaz may still find himself in trouble and at risk of a potential ban.
Following Helwani’s update, MMA fans pointed out that CBD is not currently listed on the USADA prohibited list of substances and as such, Diaz should be left alone.
— Trevor ryan (@TrevorRyanG) September 8, 2016
Were a ban to be imposed, it would effectively rule out any third clash with Conor McGregor and also any potential title shots now on the American’s radar.
However, the fact that the NAC have dropped their investigations might be seen as a possible precursor to USADA following suit.
As for Diaz, you might well imagine that there is a middle finger and a profanity laden response ready to go if asked for comment.
Gary Brennan, Pundit Arena