Back when women’s MMA was on the cusp of breaking out, promoter Gary Shaw did his best to accommodate his rising starlet Gina Carano by agreeing to whatever weight she could make – which often wasn’t the official 145-pound featherweight limit.
But we’re far removed from those days. Now, females fighting in the cage is ubiquitous to the sport, and athletic commissions force fighters to stay true to the weight class limits. In other words, there’s no special treatment doled out.
So, yeah, Mackenzie Dern didn’t make the strawweight limit (which is 115 pounds, plus a one-pound allowance for non-title fights) for his UFC 224 bout against Amanda Cooper. She was a whopping seven pounds over.
Seven pounds. That is beyond ridiculous.
The fight is still on, but Cooper isn’t too happy about Dern’s seeming lack of dietary fortitude.
Amanda Cooper is maaaad pic.twitter.com/WuQALh7gX8
— FOX Sports: UFC (@UFCONFOX) May 11, 2018
In fact, some fighters think the weight-cut failure is downright disrespectful. Here’s what fighters Nina Ansaroff and Tecia Torres think, courtesy of MMAJunkie:
“I would take the fight, but I would ask for more than 30 percent,” Ansaroff said. “I’d ask for like 50 percent, something like that. I would be upset, because seven pounds is almost like a slap in the face. It’s pretty bad – and you would know this a day or two days ago.
“So for this to happen at the day of the weigh-ins is very disrespectful, I believe. And I would probably still accept the fight, because you train a whole camp. You don’t want to give that up because someone missed weight. You take the fight, but you should be compensated for it, I believe.”
For Torres, the miss was “very disrespectful.” She brought up Dern’s previous misses – two, precisely, at LFA – and suggested the UFC move Dern up to its newly-created women’s 125-pound division.
“You’ve got to try, and I feel at 123 you really didn’t try that much,” Torres said. “She didn’t look depleted to me. I felt like she had more in her.”
It’s hard to argue against the truth of the matter, which is that Dern has been getting a decent promotional push because the UFC desperately needs stars. But homegirl is squandering it in a big way.
Here’s the Embedded vid that deals with Dern out-Gina Carano-ing Gina Carano.