The Weight Cutting Chronicles: UFC Fight Island 4

Holly Holm UFC
Holly Holm Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

Like it or not, weight-cutting is deeply rooted in mixed martial arts. MMA adopted its weight-cutting from the sport of wrestling, where it is presumed to be very advantageous to be the biggest and strongest in your weight class. Known as the ‘fight before the fight,’ most UFC fighters cut anywhere from 5-25 pounds, with some fighters even in excess of 30 pounds.

Weight-cutting is the ultimate test of discipline and willpower. Many fighters in the sport consider it very unprofessional to miss weight. In this series, we will shine a light on fighters who cut a massive amount of weight, who have missed weight multiple times in the past, who have made weight-class changes, along with how the weight-cut and weigh-in could affect possible upcoming match-ups. Basically, every aspect of weight-cutting and how it affects the fight game.

UFC Fight Island 4 goes down this weekend, putting the spotlight on the women’s bantamweight division with two key fights in the weight class. Here’s a closer look at some of the cuts ahead of Friday’s weigh-in.

Holly “The Preacher’s Daughter” Holm (13-5 MMA, 6-5 UFC)

Bantamweight (135lbs): 5-3 (UFC), Former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion

Featherweight (145lbs): 1-2 (UFC), Former UFC Women’s Featherweight Title Challenger

Holly has had one of the most decorated women’s mixed martial arts careers in the sports history. 5 of Holm’s 11 UFC bouts have taken place with a UFC Championship on the line. Holm dethroned long-time bantamweight champion, Ronda Rousey, in spectacular fashion in 2015 and captured the belt for the first time. Holly eventually lost the belt but also moved up to the featherweight division in order to take on Germaine de Randamie for the inaugural women’s featherweight belt. Though Holm lost the fight, she got another shot at the featherweight belt in a fight against Cris Cyborg, but again came up short.

Holm last fought in the featherweight division back in the middle of 2018 when she was able to grab a unanimous decision victory over Megan Anderson. Since moving back down, Holm got another crack at Amanda Nunes for the bantamweight strap but was unsuccessful and quickly finished. Holm beat Raquel Pennington in her last fight and will be taking on Irene Aldana on October 3 to try to make her path back to the bantamweight belt.