Roy Nelson Suspended for 9 Months, but Could Reduce the Sentence

Roy Nelson didn’t get the full 25-month suspension that he was facing, but is sidelined until well into 2017 and received a hefty fine for his post-fight actions after his most recent fight.

Nelson found himself in hot water with the Brazilian MMA Athletic Commission (CABMMA) for his actions following a victory over Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva at UFC Fight Night 95 on Sept. 24 in Brasilia, Brazil. 

After dropping Silva with a right uppercut late in the second round, Nelson reluctantly delivered a few more shots before referee “Big” John McCarthy stepped in to stop the action. Nelson felt it was a late stoppage. Nelson kicked or pushed McCarthy in the buttocks out of frustration after the fight. He then flipped McCarthy off while hurling obscenities at the veteran referee. 

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CABMMA put the incident before the Superior Justice Court of MMA, which has determined that Nelson should be suspended and fined. confirmed the outcome of Nelson’s case following an initial report. 

Roy Nelson UFC Fight Night 82 Media DayNelson faced a maximum penalty of a 25-month suspension and $40,000 fine. SJCMMA president Marcelo Sedlmayer Jorge, however, determined that Nelson’s penalty would be a one-year suspension and a roughly $32,000 fine. In issuing his decision, Jorge took Nelson’s intent into account, determining that he had not meant to assault McCarthy, and thus reduced the suspension to nine months and the fine to roughly $23,000. The suspension is retroactive to Sept. 29, the day that Nelson was notified of his provisional suspension.

That would mean that Nelson could be reinstated as soon as June 29, 2017. He does, however, has an option to reduce his sentence further and come back even sooner.

Nelson can reduce his suspension to six months and his fine to roughly $13,000, if he makes a formal apology, preferably within the presence of McCarthy, by Dec. 31, 2016.

“This reduction will occur only if (the UFC) authorizes (Nelson) to make the formal apology within the Octagon or at a press conference by Dec. 31, 2016, and preferably in the presence of the offended referee (John McCarthy),” Jorge said in his decision.

“Such a measure aims to promote a campaign among athletes to prevent acts of this nature, as the referee must be seen as the highest authority within the Octagon.”

If Nelson meets the requirements of the formal apology, he could return as soon as March 29, 2017.

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