Sunday, June 26, 2022

Champion supports Charles Oliveira and calls UFC’s decision to take belt a ‘disgrace’

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Reigning UFC light heavyweight champion Glover Teixeira recently endorsed Charles Oliveira after promotion forced the fighter to vacate his lightweight belt.

Teixeira was interviewed by Ariel Helwani during last Monday’s episode of The MMA Hour. And during the conversation, Teixeira launched his support for his Brazilian compatriot.

Oliveira was scheduled for his second 155-pound title defense earlier this month at UFC 274, but he tipped the scales at 155.5 pounds, half a pound over the championship limit. Because of this, the lightweight title officially became vacant when his contest with Justin Gaethje began on May 7th.

Despite arguably the best performance of his career in “Do Bronx” and stopping Gaethje with a rear naked choke on the first lap, he remains the top contender in the division.

The weight error was also not without controversy. Several fighters came out and said the scale used to precheck weight had a calibration issue, resulting in UFC 274 fighters weighing more than they thought.

Because of this, Teixeira sees it as a “shame” that the UFC took away Oliveira’s hard-earned belt.

“Man, he’s still the champion to me, to everyone (and) in his mind,” Teixeira said on MMA News. “It was a shame. It was ridiculous.

“If it was a few pounds I’d say it’s unprofessional of him but he was half a pound and everyone knows the scale problem. Yeah man he’s the champ, he’s still the champ.”

During the UFC 274 post-fight press conference, UFC President Dana White was asked about the scale controversy. He said the scale’s inaccuracy was likely caused by fighters switching it from reading pounds to kilograms and back from kilograms to pounds.

Because of this, White said the promotion will now have security guards stationed at the weighbridge.

“We have this edition where guys come out and start checking the scale the night before and all the Europeans and guys from other parts of the world are dropping kilos so they all start f***** with the scale ** Look at the kilos and who knows…” White said of MMA Fighting. “There are so many moving parts on this beast of a machine that we run every week and we need to have a security guard where the scale is now. It’s something we have to do.”

Teixeira will first enter the Octagon as a champion when he attempts to defend his 205-pound belt against Jiri Prochazka Blachowicz at UFC 267 on June 11 at UFC 275.

Teixeira, who is on a six-fight win streak, plans to get past Prochazka and then potentially fight again in New York City in November.

With his wild and unorthodox shots, Prochazka is proving to be a severe test for the 42-year-old champion. “Denisa” (28-3-1) is 2-0 in the UFC and has 25 wins via KO/TKO as a pro. His two wins in the promotion came over former light heavyweight title challengers, beating both Dominick Reyes and Volkan Oezdemir within two rounds.

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