Last Week, MMA fighter, Leandro Souza, died in Brazil died while attempting to lose 33 pounds in a week after taking fight on short notice. UFC president, Dana White, was asked about the tragedy, while in Brazil to promote UFC 168.
“Where you see the dangerous situations are the guys that take last-minute fights and have to lose a ton of weight. It’s never good. In the UFC, these guys have plenty of time. They know when they have to fight. They know the time they have. They diet and do the proper nutrition to get down the right way. When they get closer, they cut a few pounds. That’s the healthy, normal way to do it. I don’t think that the cutting weight process is ever going to be perfect, but I said it today in an interview I did with a gentleman earlier, I don’t care what level you fight on, no fight is worth dying over. If you can’t make the weight, don’t take the fight.”
Cutting weight has long been an issue in combat sports, especially MMA. It’s an issue that is nothing new to the UFC. Last year, current Heavyweight Champion, Chris Weidman, had to lose 32 pounds in ten days to make weight vs. Demian Maia. Chael Sonnen stated he had to lose 20 pounds the night before his weigh in for UFC 148 to make the 185 limit.
Losing an extreme amount of weight in such a short period of time can’t be good for a person’s health and in the most extreme cases, can even result in death. The UFC will surely be keeping a closer eye on its competitors in wake of Souza’s death.