In response to the MMAJunkie article, White: Roy Nelson's UFC career on hold until outside contract issues resolved, there has been speculation concerning why this has become an issue now given that Robert Joyner first broke news of the Square Ring, Inc. v. Nelson and Zuffa lawsuit back in early-August.
I gave significant coverage (here and here) to the case back then as well.
The short answer is that I don't know what changed. Some theorize that perhaps SRI received an injunction, or was on the verge of receiving an injunction that would enjoin Nelson from fighting for any organization pending a full trial on the merits.
Personally, I do not think that is the case for two reasons.
First, as I recall SRI's complaint did not seek injunctive relief on a temporary basis or a permanent basis. Second, and perhaps more importantly, I see no mention of any injunction on the court docket.
My theory (and, again, this is speculation), first articulated on “MMA Nation” on CBS Radio’s 106.7 The Fan, is that there is some settlement in the works.
Here is the audio to the radio segment courtesy of Luke Thomas.
If there is a settlement in the works, I would have no way of knowing whether it is between Zuffa and SRI only or if it includes Nelson. It is possible that Zuffa has agreed to have no further dealings with Nelson until any alleged contract issues between him and SRI are resolved and in exchange SRI would dismiss Zuffa from the action.
As part of this settlement (and to resolve the case), perhaps Nelson agreed to some period of time to abstain from fighting for any other promotion (6 months, a year, can't really be sure).
Alternatively, Nelson may not be part of the hypothetical settlement and may simply have to ride this litigation out until the trial -- according to the docket, the trial is set for January 3, 2012.
This is my best guess.