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October 1, 2014

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‘Grease-Gate’ still a slippery subject

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The talk surrounding Georges St. Pierre’s illegal use of Vaseline in his victory over B.J. Penn at UFC 94 on Jan. 31 may have died down a bit, but the subject is still a tough one to get a handle on.

UFC President Dana White told Neil Davidson from the Canadian Press that not only does the incident take away from St. Pierre’s solid performance at the MGM Grand, but the welterweight champ’s cornerman, Phil Nurse, who applied the lubricant is no different than Antonio Margarito's trainer Javier Capetillo, who applied his illegal hand wraps before his fight against Shane Mosley.

“You can’t do that. It's no different than (Antonio) Margarito. You put another fighter at a huge disadvantage which is very dangerous," White said over the weekend from UFC 95 in London. "I think he was (cheating). I think he absolutely positively knew that he was rubbing grease on him."

According to MMAjunkie.com, Penn’s lawyer, Raffi A. Nahabedian, who earlier this month filed a request for the Nevada State Athletic Commission to look into the illegal application of Vaseline, said Penn still plans on filing an official complaint.

“We also are intending on filing a complaint with the athletic commission with respect to the persons that are licensed by the state such as Mr. St. Pierre, Mr. (Greg) Jackson and Mr. (Phil) Nurse relating to their activities as well as other members of their team that are licensed by the state,” Nahabedian said.

NSAC Executive Director Keith Kizer said Penn’s request will be addressed in a future commission meeting, and that he is still waiting on St. Pierre's camp to file a response to Nahabedian's original accusations.

"I sent a request for information to the cornermen and I gave them 20 days from the date of the letter which is sometime next week, if my calculations are correct," Kizer told MMAjunkie.com on Sunday.

If White’s sentiment of a conspiracy to cheat rings true, blame would likely fall on St. Pierre’s shoulders as well. While it’s unlikely that the Canadian’s victory would be compromised, how far the matter will go is still anybody’s guess.

“The penalty for a licensee who violates commission rules can be a fine, or suspension, or revocation,” Kizer said on Feb. 3. “How far this will go? I don’t know.”

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