The Nevada Athletic Commission has suspended UFC flyweight Jeff Molina. According to UFC broadcast partner ESPN, the reason for his ban is not known, but it is likely related to an investigation into the fight between Darrick Minner and Shayilan Nuerdanbieke on November 5.
In the hours leading up to that battle, which Minner lost by TKO early in the first round, suspicious betting patterns were uncovered. One bet that became popular the day before the bout predicted that Nuerdanbieke would win by first-round TKO. It was eventually discovered that Minner had been injured prior to the fight, but neither he nor Glory MMA & Fitness instructor James Krause, a former UFC fighter, told the NAC about the injury.
After Minner’s contract was terminated by the UFC due to internal investigation, Krause was immediately prohibited from coaching fighters while the investigation was ongoing. Anyone who continues to train at Krause’s gym outside of Kansas City, Missouri, is no longer permitted to compete for the UFC.
On January 14, at UFC Vegas 67, Molina was supposed to take on Jimmy Flick, but the day after the UFC said that Krause fighters were no longer welcome unless they switched gyms and stopped using him as a coach, Molina withdrew from the match.
The Nevada Administrative Commission (NAC) extended the suspensions of Krause and Minner earlier this month. These suspensions were based on the failure to disclose an injury, though Nevada deputy attorney general Joel Bekker stated at the most recent NAC monthly meeting that additional violations may be discovered if further investigation is conducted.
Molina, 25, has worked with Krause for a long time. He entered the UFC in 2020 after winning on Dana White’s Contender Series, and has gone undefeated 3-0 in the UFC. He defeated Zhalgas Zhumagulov in a split decision in his last outing in June to earn his tenth straight victory.
The FBI is currently one of many federal government agencies looking into potential fight fixing.
Sean Strickland takes issue with many of the Stephen Bonnar social media tributes