Weight-cutting is a hot button issue in the sport of mixed martial arts.
All too often, fighters attempt extreme weight cuts in order to achieve a size advantage over the foes, and unfortunately, these cuts often turn out disastrously. Just last weekend, for example, Kelvin Gastelum’s failed cut to 170 pounds deprived us of his anticipated UFC 205 bout with Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone. Thiago Alves’ 6.6-pound weigh-in miss nearly nixed his scheduled bout with Jim Miller on the same card.
While weight cuts can be inconvenient from the perspective of a fan, they can also be extremely dangerous for fighters. Former bantamweight champ Renan Barao, for example, was infamously forced out of a 2014 bout with TJ Dillashaw when he passed out while attempting to cut down to 135 pounds. The former champ was subsequently hospitalized as a result of this brutal cut.
According to Joe Rogan, there is a far more recent example of the dangerous health risks of weight-cutting. If the UFC colour commentator is to be believed, former lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos passed out for three minutes while cutting weight for his July bout with Eddie Alvarez – a bout he lost by first round knockout.
Rogan made these claims on his podcast while speaking with former UFC heavyweight Brendan Schaub.
“THE DEHYDRATION IS DANGEROUS AND UNNECESSARY,” HE SAID.
“THEY HAVE IN BRAZIL,” HE CONTINUED, WHEN ASSURED BY SCHAUB THAT NOBODY HAS DIED FROM WEIGHT-CUTTING. “THEY’VE COME CLOSE IN THE UFC. DID YOU KNOW THAT [RAFAEL] DOS ANJOS PASSED OUT FOR THREE F*CKING MINUTES BEFORE HIS FIGHT WITH EDDIE ALVAREZ? WHERE HE WAS UNCONSCIOUS AND UNRESPONSIVE?”
As Rogan’s story illustrates, weight-cutting can be incredibly dangerous for the fighters who attempt it.
Singapore’s One Championship has recently made moves to obliterate this risky practice. In the UFC, however, the tradition of weight-cutting does not seem to be going anywhere any time soon.
Do you think weight-cutting should be allowed in MMA? Sound off, PENN Nation!