UFC 258: Brian Kelleher Says There’s “No Room” for Weight Cutting in MMA

Las Vegas, NV — Brian Kelleher is happy as a clam being able to leave his weight cut to 135lbs behind him this weekend.

Happy as well that, for UFC 258, he won’t have to travel overseas, either.

Although his fight with Ricky Simon was supposed to take place in Abu Dhabi, it all worked out in the end, Kelleher said during this week’s media day. “I didn’t really want to take that long flight to Fight Island, so it all worked out really. It was like an omen for me,” he stated. “So here I am now, I get to fight Ricky Simon still, we still get to make that fight, which I’m excited for.”

As he put it, the fight boils down to “two guys that get in and exchange.”

“I’m not much of a point fighter. I try to go in and finish, and I think Ricky Simon’s kind of the same,” suggested Kelleher. “He’s willing to get in and get after it. So we both kind of knew, hey, we want this fight. We want to put this fight on for the fans and be exciting. So let’s make it happen again.”

The fight will come at 145lbs, rather than the pair’s usual haunt of 135. “This time around I was ready to make bantamweight, and I had plenty of time,” Kelleher observed. “But for him, he had just fought in Abu Dhabi, so I think his team wanted to turn around and have an easier weight cut. He just went through a big weight cut I think.”

It was Simon’s team that actually proposed 145, “and I can’t say no to that. For me, I barely have to cut much weight, I feel strong. I wish we could do this all the time. I’m not a fan of weight cutting,” Kelleher explained.

That said, Kelleher recognizes that his frame is better suited for bantamweight. So his future likely lies there, despite the practice of weight cutting making for an “unhealthier fight.”

“The pop on my punches feels different, my energy feels different [at 145lbs], and it just reminds me, weight cutting, there’s no room for it in this sport,” he added.

Watch the full UFC 258 media day press scrum with Brian Kelleher above. The event takes place this Saturday, February 13 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.