Once you’re at the highest levels of MMA, making weight is a given for most UFC fighters. Unfortunately, that same expectation won’t apply for Matt Brown this weekend.
In an unusual misstep for the welterweight veteran, Brown weighed in on Friday at 172.5 pounds, a full 1.5 pounds over the contracted limit for his fight against Robbie Lawler. What makes it doubly unusual is that this is the first time Brown has missed weight in his career, with UFC on Fox 12 marking his 31st professional bout.
Usually, fighters are allowed extra time to reweigh, but the California State Athletic Commission mistakenly denied Brown the ability to do so. Hence, Brown won’t be punished or fined, and will still be able to collect “Performance of the Night” bonuses on Saturday.
That’s the official word according to Dana White (via Fox Sports reporter Marc Raimondi), who blamed the CSAC for their strange decision to not let Brown reweigh. It’s fine for Brown, who could do nothing but follow the commission’s lead, but it’s still a bad look for all parties involved.
For starters, fans won’t know if he could’ve made the 170 pound limit at all.
Considering that Brown is supposedly fighting for a future UFC title shot against Johny Hendricks, there’s now a little extra uncertainly about the match if Brown beats Lawler. After all, MMA fighters have to make the exact weight class limit for a title fight. That means if Brown was fighting for a championship today, he’d be 2.5 pounds overweight, making the main event a non-title bout. It’s actually pretty troublesome, and a problem that could be solved on the spot if the CSAC had let Brown re-weigh.
It’s also a pretty damning spot for newly-signed UFC strawweight Juliana Lima, who weighed in at 117 pounds — one full pound overweight — for her fight against fellow debutante Joanna Jędrzejczyk.
While Brown will apparently avoid a fine at the discretion of the UFC and CSAC, Lima will pay 20 percent of her purse, as she weighed in again (stripped of her remaining clothing) at 116.5 pounds. That’s an incredibly weird application of standard regulation, to say the least, but the confusion with Brown’s situation doesn’t help anything at all.