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Thiago Alves Having Trouble Cutting Weight and Jon Fitch is Not Impressed

(Maybe Thiago should concentrate more on cutting weight, not on updating his profile)

When Thiago Alves missed a scheduled appearance at yesterday afternoon’s open UFC 117 workout, it didn’t take long for reports to surface that the American Top Team fighter, who has been plagued with weight cutting issues in the past, was having problems shedding water and that he chose to forgo the media event to focus on making weight for Friday’s weigh-in.

Alves tweeted yesterday that he just had 15 pounds to go before he makes the 170-pound limit, which is at the higher end of the poundage most fighters start cutting at the beginning of the process over a week out from their bouts.

MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani caught up with Alves’ opponent on Saturday night’s card in Oakland, Jon Fitch, at the workout at the UFC gym in Concord, California and the American Kickboxing Academy fighter is not one bit pleased with the situation.

(Video courtesy YouTube/MMAFighting)

For all of you Potatoheads who prefer to read the text version of the interview, here it is:

"It’s laughable. He’s still got plenty of time, so I’m not worried. With all that’s happened around this fight, I can’t get any more stressed out about it. It is what it is and I have faith that he’s gonna make weight…We knew this was always a possible situation. He’s had issues in the past with making weight and he’s had a long layoff. So [with] all those factors together we knew that there was a possibility that he would be over weight for this fight. Still, he’s got time to make the weight and I’m sure he’s gonna make the weight."

Although he says he’s confident that Alves will make weight, Fitch says that if
Thiago doesn’t make the requirements in time, he wants "Pitbull’s" camp to agree that he will make 170 at some point before the fight, even if its less than 24 hours from the opening bell.

"I’m not looking for a scenario like [he had with] Matt Hughes and [was over by] eight pounds. That’s pretty ridiculous. A pound is fairly forgivable, but if he can’t make the weight at the weigh-ins on Friday at four o’clock, I’d still like him to make the weight before the fight some time. So if he doesn’t make it at four on Friday, make it at seven or eight or nine or midnight, or whenever. Just make the weight."

"If you have this many issues with not making weight they need to figure something out more than the twenty percent penalty cos’ it doesn’t seem like that’s motivation enough for people. It keeps happening. We’re a professional sport and part of the job is making weight."

On another note, Fitch says he would "be a bit perturbed" if Jake Shields beats Martin Kampmann and gets a title shot against the winner of St-Pierre-Koscheck next, believing that the former Strikeforce champ needs to earn the shot like everybody else in the division.

Cagepotato Comments

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JCVD as Timecop- August 6, 2010 at 8:53 am
I think Alves should fight at middle.. He would be more comfortable, and able to hold onto more mass. I honestly think it would make him a better fighter, and the UFC would have one more good middleweight to add to their already beefy roster of... three.
fatbellyfrank- August 5, 2010 at 11:17 pm
@ Almost, that would have been awesome to watch before the Stefan Struve v's Big Roy match up, Big Roys tryin not to drown while the waters only up to struves waist
fatbellyfrank- August 5, 2010 at 11:15 pm
We could just scrap weight divisions all together and just have one big moneyweight division. Strikeforce have been promoters of this for quite some time now.
Almost North- August 5, 2010 at 11:06 pm
Ok I've been drinking so here is an idea: We change all MMA weight classes to volume. Drop the fighters in a tank of water before the fight and see what they displace. You can't tell me the UFC wouldn't love televising that.
fatbellyfrank- August 5, 2010 at 6:53 pm
I just think its a matter of discipline, these guys are pro's competing at the highest level of thier chosen sport, you mostly get plenty of advance notice of when your fighting, and you should know what weight division your in FFS, so you do whats required to ensure you make weight in time for your bout, end of story, If they cant make weight, dont let em fight and withhold their money for that event.
just some dong- August 5, 2010 at 6:49 pm
If Shields vs. Fitch ever happens, the loser should be forced to watch the entire run of Lassie with their eyes propped open, Clockwork Orange style.

WalksInTheDarkness- August 5, 2010 at 4:12 pm
Not just you at all, Almost North. Especially from somewhere like American Top Team where they're reknown for their weight cutting especially, Gleison Tibau. Basically, Alves is going to be so dehydrated to make weight that I don't see how he can safely rehydrate himself in time for the fight. High blood pressure and combat sports don't mix.
Get Off Me- August 5, 2010 at 3:05 pm
Agreed, he's packing 25-35lbs of creatine, protein, nitric oxide and that ambiguous MASS 2500 shit off the local supplement store shelf. It must be weird to have to cut that down on top of the standard 20-30lbs most fighters have to worry about.
ghostboner- August 5, 2010 at 2:25 pm
@Nearly Norf & WankInsideya - I'm with yous guys on this one. I have always thought weight cutting was kind of lame. ANd I would not be surprised to see someone die as a result.

Whoever said GSP cut more than Alves, you are wrong, and should feel dumb for even speculating that.

Whoever said that Jon Fitch has accomplished WAY less and is more boring than Jake Shields... When was the last time Jake Shieldzzz fought GSP? Hmmmmm? Oh yeah, never.
Sabado Gigante- August 5, 2010 at 2:12 pm
If Shieldzzzz beats Kapmann, and Fitch beats Alves, then for sure, they should put Shieldz vs Fitch in a big fucking Siesta! Whoever wakes up first wins the title shot!!! That simple!
Booze n Brawl- August 5, 2010 at 12:36 pm
Yeah on twitter I'm following, uhhh HGH movie, no wait thats not right is it?
Art Gibs- August 5, 2010 at 12:32 pm
The problem with weight cutting is that it's very difficult to come up with a rule that discourages it. Even if you do two weigh ins, or a weigh in close to the fight, people will still cut weight. And several other websites have had articles about how dangerous it is to fight while dehydrated, which is what would happen if you had a pre-fight weigh in.

The system we have now isn't great, but I don't think there's a better option.
AkilleeZ- August 5, 2010 at 12:27 pm
Guys, leave him alone...he's got thyroid issues...
Sudos KFC- August 5, 2010 at 12:24 pm
Morning weigh ins would do exactly what you said...result in the first high level death in mma. When will people realize that fighting someone much bigger than you is far worse for your health than cutting weight and that will never change. Its not just mma you are proposing to change the culture of every combat sport, wrestling bjj boxing etc. Not happening! Plus wrestlers would have an even bigger advantage than they already dosince they already have a lot more experience cutting weight going into their careers esp considering how weigh ins work for wrestling ie mat side. As for gsp fight I bet gsp cut more weight than alves did! He just has discipline (and a personal chef lol)

Not going to happen and thank god. One of the most overblown least understood part of the game for non fighters to understand is a proper, scientific cut and recovery its a test of discipline and desire and if you are smart and got heart you can give yourself an edge. If you fuck up you get humiliated shit talked on you and get money taken away. Just as it should be
Spicymeatball- August 5, 2010 at 12:18 pm
@ Get off me

Theres no way Alves can fight at 185 hes 5-9 at best dude needs to either walk around at a lesser weight or lay off the protein a little.
Dick_Gozenya- August 5, 2010 at 12:06 pm
@ Omelette Plate

I think it was Ohio. I agree that weight cutting is a bit out of control, it's just a standardized form of cheating in my eyes. People act like it is a technique, but really it's just a strategy to try to fight guys smaller than you. I feel like if they not only allow but strongly encourage weight cutting than whats the harm in PED's? If your going to let people cheat one way you might as well just let them cheat. I would like to see a level playing field where honest and honorable fighters compete with their skills to see who is truly the better man, but there are always scumbags who will do anything to get a hollow victory. It is definitely hard to have sympathy or respect for some of these guys when their strategy involves cutting down two weight classes from their natural weight.

jgrant- August 5, 2010 at 11:56 am
Jake Shields has done more in his career and in better fashion than Jon Fitch ever has. If he wants to bitch and moan about other people getting shots at GSP he can either develop some skills and show them off in the Octagon to get Dana, Joe Silva and the fans to believe that if he fought GSP again the nicest thing you could say about Jon Fitch is that he survived a five round mauling at GSP's hands or he can go to Strikeforce and fight Nick Diaz, Evangelista Santos and then...middleweights in catchweight bouts because there are no other welterweights in Strikeforce.

Jon Fitch is so boring that he makes Jake Shields look as exciting as Leben.
Dick_Gozenya- August 5, 2010 at 11:54 am
@ Almost North

I think I'm about to resume my original identity, I just can't be a Dick forever.

@ The Article

I say if Fitch beats Alvez and Shieldzzz beats Kampman (two big ifs- I mean we're dealing with a pitbull and a hitman here) they should slog it out for title contention. I bet it would actually not be that boring, I bet it would be one massive 15 minute positional scramble, probably see some pretty cool grappling.
DaltonSwayze- August 5, 2010 at 11:53 am

It absolutely will be a guy like Johnson or Alves who can fight top competition but is obviously in the wrong weight class. I worry about Alves because he already had that brain issue, and the dehydration isn't going to help matters. Of course, I don't know shit about biology so who the fuck knows?
Omelette Platter- August 5, 2010 at 11:26 am
i seem to recall talk a while ago from one of the state commissions (was it nj?) about inposing a system of multiple weigh-ins, starting month out, then a week out, then the day before, with weight targets being based on weight class - say, for example, a ww could be 185 lbs a month out from the fight, and maybe 175 a week out. these are numbers pulled from my ass.

i'm sure there's probably still ways to abuse the system, but really we need to find a way to make these things safer for everyone involved. rehydrating isn't as simple as "hey, i'll drink ten pounds of water and now i'm good"; proper rehydration of even 2-3% of body weight takes 24-48 hrs. without proper hydration muscles get stiff; risk of concussion goes up from the brain not having any cushion.

take a guy like anderson silva, who walks around at about 220 lbs and cuts from probably 200-205. he's cutting 5-10% of his body weight through a combination of starvation and sweating. as someone above me pointed out, we very well may see a death in mma because of weight cutting; i'm betting on brain injury, but i really would hate to see it happen.

in addition to all that, it punishes guys that want to do things the proper healthy way. anyone who's a natural ww and cuts maybe a few pounds just to hit 170 either has to consider a move to lw or deal with opponents who outweigh them by 10-15 lbs.

tl,dr : weight cutting as it is now sucks. mma needs reform.
Almost North- August 5, 2010 at 11:25 am
I actually find the name changing really annoying. Who the hell is that?
FreeBJs4Dudes- August 5, 2010 at 11:22 am
Thanks Mike for the new username! But hey just because of what you do on your free time doesn't mean I do the same.... and thats cool if you You know you have a man crush on him no worries I think we all do, haha
MF Joel- August 5, 2010 at 11:19 am
Well based on that vid, I'm going to say that Jon Fitch is cool as fuck. I kind of feel bad about hating watching his fights, because I really like his attitude.

That said, from now on I'm doing a shot whenever a fighter says 'It is what it is.' in an interview.
Almost North- August 5, 2010 at 11:17 am
My thinking was that weighing them closer to fight time would prevent extreme cutting because there wouldn't be recovery time. You could make a lower class but wouldn't have the energy to actually fight.
Stak40- August 5, 2010 at 10:53 am

If there is a weight class then people are always going to find a way to make the weight they feel they will be most successful in. How else would you regulate people being dramatically heavier than their opponents?