The Weight Cutting Chronicles: UFC Fight Island 5

Marlon Moraes UFC
FORTALEZA, BRAZIL - FEBRUARY 02: Marlon Moraes of Brazil celebrates after his knockout victory over Raphael Assuncao of Brazil in their bantamweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at CFO Centro de Formacao Olimpica on February 2, 2019 in Fortaleza, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

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 5 sees a number of fighters making significant cuts. Here’s a look at some of the standouts.

Marlon “Magic” Moraes (23-6 MMA, 5-2 UFC)

Bantamweght (135lbs): 5-2 (UFC), Former Bantamweight Title Challenger

Marlon Moraes has never missed weight while he has been in the UFC and he has not changed weight classes since he has been in the UFC. However, it is worth noting that not only is the 32-year-old Moraes built like an absolute tank, but he is not authorized by California State Athletic Commission to cut to 135lbs. Marlon had weighed in at 135.4lbs. ahead of his fight against Aljamain Sterling in late 2017. By the next day, like magic, Moraes had gained more than 14.5% of his total body weight back, entering the cage for his bout at at least 155lbs. CSAC made the decision to no longer license Moraes for bantamweight fights since he had gained back more than 10% of his total body weight prior to the fight, and they won’t in the future either, “without extensive medical documentation from a licensed physician certifying the weight class is appropriate and verified by CSAC physicians.”

Moraes hasn’t fought in California since that fight. Marlon hasn’t missed weight or weighed in at a higher weight class than bantamweight in more than 6 years. And thanks to Moraes’ muscular frame there is plenty of water weight for him to lose while cutting and he, along with his team, seems to have gotten his weight cut down to a precise science. Moraes will be taking on Cory Sandhagen at UFC Fight Island 5 in the bantamweight weight class.

Credit: Rodney James Edgar/Cageside Press – (The muscular physique of Marlon Moraes during weigh-ins)