The recent tragedy in Brazil has me thinking more and more about weight cutting in MMA. I realize it's been part of MMA, boxing, wrestling for decades. Yes it's a game within the game, but is it really necessary? For an example lets look at an upcoming title fight. On November 16 Georges St. Pierre will face Johny Hendricks to headline a stacked card for UFC 167. Georges walks around on average between 190-195lbs. Johny walks around on average between 190-200lbs. Both fighters will cut between 20-30lbs in order to make weight for 170lbs. So, lets think about this for a minute. Both men will go through what I can only assume is living hell to cut weight. They will go through a week of being able to drink less and less water. A week of no salt, and a diet containing no more than 50 carbs a day. Both men will (hopefully) hit the scales at or very close to 170lbs. They will then have about 13 hours ( if you include 8 hours of sleep) to rehydrate and try to gain all the weight back. The way they can achieve this is by drinking plenty of fluids, eating lots of carbs, and adding salt to anything and everything.
These men have put their bodies through hell for a week. For what? What is the point? Both men will weigh in at 170lbs. Both men will be fighting at or near 190-195lbs. This is one match-up where the tortures of cutting weight really doesn't benefit either fighter.
Fighters seem to be cutting more and more weight these days. I've noticed it's become the thing to do, and it can be an advantage. Look at the featherweight division in the UFC. Take Cole Miller for example. This guy is 6'1", and fighting in a weight class of 145lbs. 6'1" and 145lbs, something seems wrong there. Considering the current champ in featherweight Jose Aldo stands 5'7". If we have guys 6'1" fighting guys on average 5'5'-5'8", then what is the point in having weight classes.
I don't expect anything to change. In fact at the rate the UFC is adding lower and lower weight classes, I only see more fighters pushing the limits to try and get any advantage they can.