It seems like every major fight card is rocked by at least one fighter missing weight. This problem is so prevalent that cards that don’t feature a weigh-in hiccup — like last weekend’s UFC Chile card — feel like a real rarity.
When it comes to solutions for the epidemic of fighters missing weight for their bouts, there have been dozens of solutions suggested. Former UFC star and current Bellator staple Chael Sonnen, however, thinks he’s figured out a way to curb the problem significantly.
His answer? Punishment. Severe and unfailing punishment.
“My solution is ‘you’re done, you’re not fighting, go home,’” Sonnen said on a recent episode of his Beyond the Fight podcast (transcribed by Milan Ordoñez for BloodyElbow). “’You’re cut, you’re released’, however extreme you want to get with it.”
“[Promotions need to say] ’You broke the deal, you cheated, you lied on the contract, and we’re not using you.’ And I agree that, with the plethora of people in MMA that miss weight, sometimes two and three people a night, that that is a significant problem.”
“I would also argue as an experiment, we can run shockwaves through this sport right now by yanking one guy. One cheater, one violator. Don’t just take his money, up it to a disqualification, pay the other person, and I don’t think you would have that problem for another two or three years.”
As the quotes above suggest, Sonnen feels that those who miss weight for their fights are essentially cheating — which is in keeping with a comment former UFC bantamweight champ Dominick Cruz made recently.
“I really did appreciate that Dom called it out because that’s what it is,” Sonnen said. “You cheated, there’s a rule here. A signed, written rule that comes with a punishment.”
“That’s how we know things are rules,” he continued. “There’s a punishment, then there was a rule. And you broke it, and it is cheating. Dom called it cheating, Dom called it the right word.”
What do you think of this suggestion from Chael Sonnen?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 5/23/2018.