Strikeforce Fedor Vs. Silva Proves That a New Weight Class Is Needed in MMA

By Nick Caron

Saturday night’s Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Silva made quite an impact on the history of mixed martial arts but perhaps no point was greater illustrated than the size differences among heavyweight MMA fighters.

The former Pride heavyweight champion, Fedor Emelianenko weighed in for his most recent fight at 230-pounds, a number that he has hovered relatively close to throughout most of his MMA career. Even at this fairly low weight, Emelianenko’s body is not toned. In fact, many would say that this legendary fighter is overweight given his frame.

Fedor’s opponent, Antonio Silva, was another story altogether as he tipped the scales, looking ripped at an impressive 264-pounds. But those numbers don’t tell the whole story.

While Emelianenko sticks around 230-pounds and doesn’t really cut weight, “Bigfoot” Silva drops significant pounds to make weight for his fights. While Silva has to get below the 265-pound maximum weight for the heavyweight division the day before the fights, there is no rule that says he has to be that weight when he steps into the cage to fight.

Rumors are that Silva was somewhere around 285-pounds on Saturday night at fight time. By adding back the water-weight and re-fueling his body, this giant’s advantage got even bigger. The 35-pound weight advantage that he had the day before had become a 55-pound weight advantage when the two were set to do battle.

Here is a quick look at the weight classes under the current weight class rules in mixed martial arts among the major U.S. promotions:

Bantamweight: 126 – 135-pounds
Featherweight: 136 – 145-pounds
Lightweight: 146 – 155-pounds
Welterweight: 156 – 170-pounds
Middleweight: 171 – 185-pounds
Light Heavyweight: 186 – 205-pounds
Heavyweight: 206 – 265-pounds

With just a quick glance, the problem here should be very evident as the current heavyweight division has about a 60-pound weight range.

 

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