Tony Ferguson’s scheduled April 18 interim lightweight title fight with Justin Gaethje didn’t end up happening, but the top lightweight contender weighed in at 155 pounds the Friday before anyway.
Former two-division UFC champ Daniel Cormier found Ferguson’s display of toughness and professionalism very impressive.
“Tony Ferguson stepping on the scale at 155, that tells you how disciplined this man is,” Cormier told Ariel Helwani (via Bloody Elbow). “How disciplined is Tony Ferguson to get all the way down to the championship weight with nothing to gain? That’s a boss move. I know Tony and I don’t have the best relationship, but that is a boss move.
“Tony Ferguson stayed the course,” Cormier continued. “And that tells me that come May 9th, that dude is dangerous for anybody, because he’s so disciplined and so in tune with himself right now going into this fight.”
Cormier continued, conceding that his own training partner Khabib Nurmagomedov — a chief rival of Ferguson — wouldn’t undergo a weight cut for a canceled fight.
“More than anything, it speaks to the mental toughness of Tony Ferguson,” Cormier said. “That’s really what that is. Now, I don’t think anyone should question that, and I believe that if they do, it’s misguided. It’s very misguided, because the dude did something that most fighters won’t do.
“I’m telling you this right now, I love Khabib, but he wouldn’t do that. He wouldn’t make the weight for nothing. He won’t suffer through that for no reason. Conor McGregor, he would not suffer through that for no reason.”
Ferguson was originally expected to battle Nurmagomedov for undisputed gold on April 18. When Nurmagomedov got stuck in Russia due to travel restrictions associated with the coronavirus pandemic, however, the UFC booked Ferguson for a short-notice interim title fight with Gaethje. That April 18 card ended up falling through, but the Ferguson vs. Gaethje fight has since been relocated to a May 9 event tentatively scheduled for Florida.
What did you think of Tony Ferguson making weight last Friday? Are you with Daniel Cormier on this one?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 4/22/2020.