White Responds to Chimaev’s Weight Conspiracy Theory

Dana White is coming off one of the most complex fight weeks in UFC history, and the MMA promotion president has no time for conspiracy theories regarding the week’s events.

UFC 279 was originally scheduled to be headlined by a welterweight matchup between Khamzat Chimaev and Nate Diaz. “Borz” put those plans and the entire card in jeopardy when he stepped on the scales for the weigh-ins and was 7.5 pounds over the welterweight limit.

After several hours of speculation, the UFC finally decided to shuffle the matchups on the top 3 fights of the event in order to save the card.

Nate Diaz ended up facing Tony Ferguson in the night’s main event, while Ferguson’s former opponent Li Jingliang agreed to face Daniel Rodriguez in a 180-pound bout. Kevin Holland had prepared to face Rodriguez and then met Chimaev in the evening’s co-main event.

Nate Diaz vs. Tony Ferguson became the main event of UFC 279 after Chimaev missed weight. (Zuffa LLC)

For many fans, the new card actually had more appealing matches than the fights originally planned. It’s no secret that a number of MMA fans love a good conspiracy theory, and the drama at UFC 279 led to rampant speculation online that it was all orchestrated by the UFC. .

White dismisses UFC 279 conspiracy theorists

Although he was not asked about it directly during the event post-fight press conferenceDana White used a question about Chimaev’s weight cut to bring up the subject of conspiracy theories himself.

“We knew he was going to miss the weight,” White said of the weigh-in drama. “The doctors came up to see him. When the doctor comes up and the doctor calls off the fight – if you dance around the question that there was a conspiracy theory…”

The UFC president was quickly reassured that was not the implication of the question, although White was smiling during his response and seemed to approach the subject with good humor.

“Okay, because there’s fucking crazies on the internet who think this was all staged and planned and whatever. If you think (PAUSE) the crazy guys we’ve had here this week could be orchestrated into something that would be – you’re literally crazy. This all happened and we had to deal with it. And I just couldn’t wait to get it over with tonight.

Although the circumstances leading up to the redesigned card may have caused considerable stress for White and the UFC, the event itself ended up being a success.

The main card featured finishes in every fight except for Rodriguez vs. Jingliang, including Chimaev quickly dispatching Kevin Holland and Diaz landing a fourth-round guillotine choke against Ferguson in the main event.

What do you think of White’s response to conspiracy theorists who believe Chimaev’s weight issues and resulting changes for UFC 279 were planned by the UFC?

Sharon D. Cole