Undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov, who was set to take on Tony Ferguson was hospitalized last night after failing to make weight. Outspoken opponent of weight cutting and UFC commentator Joe Rogan slammed MMA weight cutting practices following the upsetting news.
Joe Rogan took to Twitter to air out his frustration as the most anticipated fight at UFC 209 is scrapped.
“Weight cutting is the biggest problem in MMA. We need a solution where we transition towards fighters competing at their actual weight,” Rogan tweeted.
Joe Rogan also believes that UFC fighters don’t perform at their best due to the grueling weight cut, which can affect a fighter’s liver and kidney function.
“To severely dehydrated yourself 24 hours before a cage fight is insane and has massive health and performance consequences,” Rogan stated in a follow-up tweet.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 3, 2017
Former UFC lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos, who had a near death experience prior to his fight with Eddie Alvarez in which he lost his title, retweeted Joe Rogan’s comments about weight cutting.
Current UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor was asked about a potential match-up with Khabib Nurmagomedov following his victory against Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205. McGregor called the popular Russian sambo wrestler a “pull-out merchant” and stated that Khabib must prove he will show up before accepting a fight.
— TheMacLife (@Maclifeofficial) March 3, 2017
Many Conor fans now call this statement a Mystic Mac moment due to his habit of predicting events before they happen.
BREAKING: Khabib fight with Cucuy cancelled after KN hospitalized Thurs for weight mgmt issues
Conor been saying this all along of Khabib pic.twitter.com/yilnh3fYCg
— BoxingHypeStore.com (@BoxingHype) March 3, 2017
According to MMA Fighting, the UFC released a statement following Khabib being pulled out of the fight. It reads as follows.
“UFC lightweight Khabib Nurmagomedov was transported to Sunrise Hospital & Medical Center Thursday evening due to weight management medical issues. He was treated and has been discharged, UFC officials confirmed.
The scheduled interim lightweight championship bout between Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson at UFC 209 has been canceled on the doctor’s recommendation.
— MMAFighting.com (@MMAFighting) March 4, 2017
“UFC 209 emanates from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, NV, Saturday night live on pay-per-view at 10 p.m./7 p.m. ET/PT. Tyron Woodley takes on Stephen Thompson with his welterweight championship on the line in a rematch from their 2016 Fight of the Year contender at UFC 205.”
Dana White joked that he was on suicide watch as he scrambled to find a replacement for Khabib. However, Tony Ferguson will not be fighting in the main event tonight and the fight has been scrapped.
It has been reported that Khabib made it within six pounds on the 155 limit before things went wrong and he had to be hospitalized. This is not the first time Khabib has missed weight. Nurmagomedov missed weight by about four pounds at UFC 160 in a fight against Abel Trujillo, which he won.
WOODLEY vs THOMPSON!!! pic.twitter.com/dv2BATeCHB
— Dana White (@danawhite) March 4, 2017
Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov are considered the two best lightweight contenders, and this is the third time they were scheduled to fight. Khabib pulled out of the first fight citing an injury and Ferguson pulled out of the second scheduled match up due to a lung issue.
It is unclear at this point if the UFC will attempt to make the fight again or Tony Ferguson, who is on a nine-fight win streak gets an immediate title shot against Conor McGregor.
We received a warm welcome in Dakar at the Academy of Senegalese Wrestling Max Sports where I met their local star big heavyweight Didier! pic.twitter.com/Io44PKU7yX
— Georges St-Pierre (@GeorgesStPierre) January 30, 2017
While McGregor is seeking a boxing match with Floyd Mayweather, it is far from a done deal. Dana White predicts that his next fight will be in the UFC and his most likely opponent will be Ferguson as McGregor has complained about his opponents pulling out in the past.
UFC 209 will go on as planned with Tyron Woodley taking on contender Stephen Thompson in the main event. UFC embedded numbers suggest that Nurmagomedov vs. Ferguson was the most anticipated fight on the card. It is unclear how this fight being scrapped will affect UFC PPV numbers.
Will you be tuning into UFC 209 tonight?
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Correction: March 4, 2017 : A previous version of the article stated that Joe Rogan is a ‘proponent’ of weight cutting, it has been corrected to ‘opponent’.
[Featured Image by Michael Reaves/Getty Images]