Wonderboy to White on plan for return to late weigh-ins: H**K no
At UFC Fight Night 130 two-time UFC welterweight title challenger Stephen Thompson fought Darren Till, who failed to make weight by 3.5 pounds, and then won a decision. Till is now the #1 contender behind champion Tyron Woodley and interim champ Colby Covington. Thompson is ranked #5.
UFC president Dana White recently responded to the weight-cutting issue by calling for a return to late weigh-ins, rather than the morning ones that have received near-universal praise. To fully appreciate Wonderboy’s response, you have to understand the man is a highly-disciplined, Christian, Southern gentleman. A word like “heck” or “darn” is for Wonderboy like “Motherf@$%er” for the average fighter, but harsher, seriously.
“I know Dana White was saying they wanted to go back to the 4 or 5 o’clock official weigh-ins? My response to that would be ‘heck no’ man,” said Thompson to Chris Taylor for BJPENN.com. “During my last weight cut I was thinking how did I ever get through half of a day being down at 170. Not just a half a day but Thursday night and then you would have to keep that weight all the way up until like four or five o’clock the next day. I mean to have less time to rehydrate is just plain stupid.”
Thompson has a stern theory for why a few fighters are missing weight. It’s not that early weigh-ins are bad, it that the league insufficiently punishes weight cutting failures.
“People are just being lazy. People just aren’t making weight because they know they can get away with it,” he said. “It’s like yeah ok I have to forfeit twenty percent of my purse, but if I win I will move up the rankings and probably get paid more for my next fight. You know? The consequences just aren’t enough. It’s allowing people to get away with some major bullcrap. If the UFC implemented stricter penalties, like the fight doesn’t happen, or you have to give your opponent half of your purse, or you can’t move up the rankings if you miss weight, then I believe more people would be inclined to follow the rules.”
White says that fighters are supportive of the return to the old weigh-ins time, but they’re not.
“From what I’ve seen on social media, all of the fighters have made it pretty clear that they don’t want to go back to the old afternoon weigh ins,” said Thompson. “So I don’t know why they are still planning on doing that.”
Thompson also pointed out that late weigh-ins may lead to more fights being called off.
“I think it will eventually cause athletic commissions to cancel more fights,” he said. “I mean look at Yoel Romero from UFC 225, there is no way he would have been allowed to fight had those weigh-ins taken place at 4:00 or 5:00p.m. No chance. That fight would have been called off for sure.”
A return to the past can feel compelling. However, like smoking on airplanes …
… delicious lead in paint …
… wearing a lucky charm made out of weasel testicles to prevent pregnancy …
… some old practices don’t work as well. Like late weigh-ins.