Hirota pulled from UFC Fight Night 117 over weight cutting concerns
UFC featherweight Mizuto Hirota appeared disoriented at the UFC Fight Night 117 weigh-ins, and missed by four pounds. He did not look like he should get out of a chair unaided, never mind fight the next day.
Never the less, he was fined 30% of his purse, with the entire sum going to opponent Charles Rosa, but the bout was allowed to go on. You don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowing, or a doctor to tell someone should not be fighting. Eventually, saner heads prevailed, and the bout was canceled.
Due to health and safety concerns, the UFC featherweight bout Hirota vs. Rosa at UFC Fight Night Japan: Saint Preux vs. Okami has been cancelled, as Hirota was deemed unfit to compete by the UFC medical team.
UFC Fight Night Japan: Saint Preux vs. Okami will proceed as scheduled with 10 bouts at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan. Moving to the main card will be the flyweight bout between Jussier Formiga and Ulka Sasaki.
The whole point of weight divisions is making fights safe and fair. But that attempt at safety has lead to one of the most dangerous aspects of an already dangerous pursuit. Lots of compelling efforts are dangerous, like mountain climbing and automobile racing, but no one requires you to ruin your body dehydrating the day before.
Combat sports are inherently dangerous and that won’t change. But the culture of extreme weight cutting can readily be changed – the blueprint is already widely known. California State Athletic Commissioner Andy Foster crafted a 10-point plan to combat it, with the explicit support of the UFC. There are two ways it happens in the UFC. One, they wait for a UFC fighter to die, and then do it. Or, the UFC starts Foster’s 10-point plan before someone dies.
What are you waiting for, someone to die?