Following an incredible turn of events that saw UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier go from missing weight to being allowed a second weigh-in attempt where he made weight just minutes later, New York State Athletic Commission executive director Tony Giardina explained why the situation was allowed to unfold the way it did.
With five minutes to go in the two-hour weigh-in window on Friday, Cormier stepped on the scale, naked behind a towel, at 206.2 pounds. Distraught, Cormier exited the scale.
A couple minutes later, Cormier returned, stepped on the scale a second time, and hit 205 pounds on the nose. Inexplicably, Cormier, within the scope of about two minutes, went from 206.2 pounds to 205 pounds. The only visible difference between Cormier’s first trip to the scale and the second was that he had his hands on the towel strung in front of him on the second attempt.
At the last minute of the weigh-in, Cormier’s challenger, Anthony Johnson stepped on the scale at 203.8 pounds.
Normally, under the new early weigh-in program that was instituted by the UFC about a year ago, a fighter must weigh-in within the two-hour window and they are allowed one attempt. If the fighter is clothed, they may disrobe and re-weigh, but not exit the room to cut further weight and return.
Under the NYSAC’s policies, for championship fights only, if the athlete misses weight on the first attempt, he or she is allowed a two-hour window to make a second attempt. The commission’s rule supersedes the UFC.
“The policy of the athletic commission in championship bouts is to allow fighters to get on the scale a second time if they are overweight the first time they get on the scale,” said Giardina. “He is allowed, according to commission policy, up to two hours to get back on the scale.”
Cormier, who returned less than three minutes later, was certainly within the two-hour window.
Athletes in non-title fights are not allowed a two-hour window if they miss weight.
When addressing whether or not Cormier crossed any lines by having his hands draped over the towel, there seemed to be confusion between what reporters were asking and what Giardina was referencing. So there was little clarity on that issue.
(Courtesy of MMAFightingonSBN)