The California State Athletic Commission made a mistake with regards to Chael Sonnen
's licensing status, and as a result the fighter might not have to sit out an entire year before he can reapply for a fighter's license in the Golden State, according to a report from ESPN.com
CSAC executive officer George Dodd admitted the error to Josh Gross, saying he had misinterpreted the application of rule 399, which would have required Sonnen to wait a full year between licensing applications.
But since the commission had voted merely to uphold Sonnen's suspension rather than to revoke or deny his license, that rule does not apply, Dodd said.
"That's what we came up with," Dodd told ESPN. "That's why I needed to go out there with this and set the record straight that he can apply after June 29, after his license does expire, because that's the legal jurisdiction we have to the end.
"Rule 399 was treated as almost a revocation or denial, but you can't do that.
"I'm the one that put it out there and the error of putting it out there rests solely on me, but we're going to correct the situation as we should."
So what does it mean for Sonnen's fighting future? For one thing, he can reapply for a license when his current one expires on June 29, 2011.
Of course, there's no guarantee that the commission will grant him a license then, and if he is rejected at that time then he will have to wait a year before he can reapply.
As Dodd told MMA Fighting
last week, "rehabilitation" is one of the primary criteria the CSAC will judge Sonnen's future licensing applications on.
"[Sonnen] is going to have to show that he's done something to promote the sport, promote goodwill," Dodd said. "He does a lot of good things already. He talks to kids and stuff like that about making right decisions. But he's going to have to show that he's making the right decisions as well. You can say it, but you have to make those decisions yourself."