Somewhere in the middle of the night Corey Hill woke from a fever dream, screaming "Don't do it!" Hill, as many may remember, was a 6' 4" fighter fighting at lightweight. And while he generated plenty of power in his lanky frame the results were... bad is putting it lightly.
Now, in a move that has all the hallmarks of a bad idea in the making, former Ultimate Fighter winner Jonathan Brookins is looking to make his return to MMA. It's not that Brookins returning to fighting is a bad idea, by all measure he's a very capable martial artist. Certainly capable of winning a season of the Ultimate Fighter and putting up some respectable performances before meeting better and brighter prospects. What makes me question his senses here is that he'll be making his MMA return at flyweight. That's a 6' 0" former lightweight fighting at 125 lbs. Dann Stupp tweeted the news last week:
Legacy FC announces signing of Jonathan Brookins, who's going to 125. From @Mickmaynard2's email: Yes he is fighting at 125, not a typo :)— Dann Stupp (@MMAjunkieDann) January 24, 2014
Brookins returned from his retirement travels in India (wonderfully documented by Shaun Al-Shatti) late last year and moved his MMA training to Tristar gym. It's a good move for any fighter looking to make the most of their natural gifts and, as he's still only 28 years old, he certainly has the time to settle in to a new camp and make his name fighting again. But it's hard to imagine him doing so at any significant level at 125 lbs. Apparently he's currently walking at 140, so it's not a matter of weight cutting, but the tallest current UFC flyweights are 5' 9 Louis Smolka and recently released (and also 5' 9") Marcus Vinicius. They already seem like gargantua and Vinicius seemed held together by string and tissue paper for his fight against Ali Bagautinov. I'm just not sure that the logistics of anatomy will allow him to compete at a high level at that size.
Brookins will make his return against Cody Fuller at Legacy FC 29 on March 21.