Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kizer announced his impending resignation on Friday, and immediately, two questions were tossed about like a pair of live grenades: “Why is he leaving?” and “Who should replace him?” Kizer was quick to give an answer to the first question (he says it’s time to move on), but the latter remains, its pin pulled and its chemical fuse burning away. Who would be a suitable replacement for Kizer, who’s held his post since 2006 and presided over one of the most high-profile athletic commissions in the nation?
Some have suggested that it should be Nick Lembo, the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board’s longtime counsel.
— Jeremy Botter (@jeremybotter) January 11, 2014
Alongside then-commissioner Larry Hazzard Jr., Lembo helped formulate the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts in 2000, in an era when the sport was banned throughout most of the country. Since then, the NJSACB has remained at the forefront of MMA regulation and oversight, and the commission is considered by most (if not all) to be the best of the bunch.
So is Lembo interested in the job? Fighters.com caught up with him on Saturday, at a pre-UFC 169 seminar held for commission judges, referees and inspectors, and asked him this very question.