(Alistair, we don’t want to question your lawyer’s advice, but we don’t think a ‘pose-off’ with Keith Kizer is really the solution to your problems.)
We’re not sure how much UFC heavyweight contender Alistair Overeem is paying for his legal advice and representation but hopefully he’s getting a discount. The unlicensed fighter recently went on MMA Uncensored and revealed that he hoped to appear in front of the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) soon to reapply for a license early.
He’s been campaigning to fight champion Junior Dos Santos for the title in December, but wouldn’t realistically be able to do so unless he was licensed months prior to fight, in order to allow the UFC to promote the bout. After all, in just one fight with the UFC, The Reem has been great at either making the UFC nervous that he would blow a huge fight or in fact blow a huge fight because he has trouble taking and passing urine tests.
“I’m able to reapply for my license in December a couple days before the fight. But we have a strategy,” he said.
“We’re going to go in front of the commission sooner with the argument of good behavior. We have been doing random tests on our own. They were all witnessed by an independent doctor. In the hope of getting a license sooner. I think we will get it sooner. Maybe a conditional license that I have to appear and do some random tests.”
“We have a set date this month. Nothing confirmed, we’re gonna try and get it. Hopefully we will.”
It was a conditional license that Overeem violated when he failed his last drug test with Nevada. After failing to submit samples on time in late 2011 for his scheduled fight with Brock Lesnar Overeem had to appear in front of the NSAC to explain why. The commission then issued him a license to fight Brock, on the condition that he be subject to random drug tests in the months that followed. It was the first of those required tests that Overeem failed early this year.
Also, “good behavior,” when one isn’t competing or being tested by actual regulating bodies is pretty easy to achieve. Well, unless you want to start allegedly shoving women in night clubs on New Year’s Eve, or something.
In any case, NSAC Executive Director Keith Kizer appeared to put the kibosh on the great “strategy” of Overeem’s legal team. “That must be wishful thinking…He will not be on the agenda,” Kizer told MMA Fighting of Overeem and the commission’s August 24th meeting.
Kizer also said he can’t imagine Overeem being allowed to reapply for a license with the state before his existing December 27th date. “I see no way to do that. I know of none,” he said.
“But even if the commission had some discretion to grant some waiver of time, I personally don’t see this as the case. I’d be against that. There is some discretion at the commission level, but I don’t think this is the case to use that discretion. This is not just a guy who engaged in cheating, but a guy who ran out the front door when the testing was being done.”
“I can’t speak for the commissioners, but I give him a little credit for it,” said Kizer about Overeem’s self-initiated drug tests. “I appreciate the effort. I’m not sure how relevant it is though. I guess any negative test has some merit. It definitely beats any positive result.”
There is one glimmer of hope for Alistair, however, according to Kizer. Nevada can still ask to randomly test Overeem. If they do, and he accepts and passes, that could help his case.
“If he fails or if he refuses to test, that would be a factor [in the licensing process],” Kizer said. “Or if he passed, that would be a factor, too. There’s always the ability to ask.”
After failing a random drug test earlier this year in Nevada Overeem’s lawyer David Chesnoff weaved a convoluted tale of accidental injection of testosterone from a Texas doctor in front of the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
As expected, the commission stood by their testing methods and results, were un-moved by Alistair’s defense and refused to license the fighter to fight, saying he could reapply in nine months after they tore the witnesses to shreds with basic questions. The commission wasn’t even aware at the time of that decision of the dubious record and past of the doctor who testified in front of them but still found Overeem’s defense unconvincing.
Overeem and his team continue to formulate strategies that don’t really involve an understanding of how the NSAC typically operates or where they currently stand on certain issues. It isn’t often that someone that has messed up as much, as often and as quickly as Overeem has with the NSAC can get licensed or have a suspension rolled back without simply sitting back and serving their time, so to speak.
Time will tell if one of Team Overeem’s outlandish legal plans end up working or not. We kind of hope so, since we want to see ‘The Demolition Man’ back in action as much as anyone. Until then, we can always watch Overeem in happier times.