‘Off the record’ weigh in rules change at UFC 158?
The convention in mixed martial arts is to allow a one pound weight allowance for all fights, EXCEPT title bouts, where the fighters must make the numbered weight.
A video recently surfaced, taken shorlty before the UFC 158 weigh in, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Senior Vice President of Business and Legal Affairs and Assistant General Counsel for the UFC Michael Mersh conveys news from the Quebec AC to Nick Diaz and his camp that things were going to be a little different at the UFC 158 weigh in.
.9 of a pound different.
Mersch comes up to Diaz and shakes his hand. The audio is inaudible at points, but most of the dialogue is clear.
“Here, they’re going to allow you and Georges to have an extra hour,” Mersch says. “Just in case somebody doesn’t make it.”
“But the good news is, they don’t count the decimal. If you’re 170.2 it’s 170. If it’s 170.9. it’s 170.”
A member of the Diaz camp responds, asking “why didn’t we know that before?”
“Should be fine, hopefully, other than that. Just so you guys are in the loop, if there’s …”
Again, a member of the Diaz camps responds, asking “why didn’t you tell us that yesterday?”
“Well, no,” he says. “It’s just something to keep in mind. That’s kind of an off the record type of thing. But keep that in mind. As long as he’s under 171, we should be good.
“But, there is a time period afterwards, for you and Georges only. All the other fighters have to make it the first time. Just letting you guys be in the loop, okay?”
A member of the Diaz camp quips, “that’s a loophole… A Canadian loophole.”
Michel Hamelin, director of the Regie des Alcools des Courses et des Jeux (Quebec AC), and representative Joyce Trembley both said that this has always been a rule in Quebec, and no rules were tweaked to favor GSP.
“I’ll tell you this,” said Hamelin. “The one thing we always do is respect our rules.”
Trembley reiterated that no changes were made, and provided further detail.
“Currently, the Régie does take into consideration the maximum weight determined by contract when it carries out the weight-ins before a bout,” wrote Trembley to B/R. “However, our regulation on combat sports does not take decimals into account. Their consideration is a question of interpretation likely to be debated between the two parties under contract.”
In sum, the Quebec AC , unlike most commissions, does not consider decimal points in determining weight.