One of the benefits of fighting as a heavyweight in MMA is a weight cut is usually not involved.
Sure, some need to get under the 265-pound weight maximum. However, there is no minimum.
So on Saturday in the main event at Bellator 192 at The Forum, Chael Sonnen will be likely be giving away about 40 pounds to Quinton “Rampage” Jackson in the opening fight of Bellator’s Heavyweight Grand Prix.
For his part, Jackson isn’t sure what he’ll weigh Friday morning.
“Me being a heavyweight, I know I’m under 265, so I haven’t weighed myself in a while. I don’t have to stress about weight,” the former Pride middleweight and UFC light heavyweight champion said. “Fighting at 205 pretty much my whole career, then not having to worry about weight, is a big stress reliever.”
Jackson said finding out a year and a half ago he had hypothyroidism — an underactive thyroid that can create difficulties losing weight — has essentially sealed his fate at fighting at heavyweight.
Sonnen, however, is jumping into the higher weight class for the first time. And like Jackson, though he has a fight weight in mind, he said he hasn’t weighed himself lately.
“I was walking about 224, 222. I try to get some weight off. Move a little better, conditioning a little better,” the former UFC middleweight and lightweight title challenger said. “I haven’t checked, but I bet I’m right about 218, 214.”
Jackson knows what Sonnen’s strategy will be: Take him down and hold him down. Some call it a “lay and pray” strategy. Others have a cruder phrase for it.
Either way, Jackson isn’t thrilled with it since his last fight — “ugly” in his words — was a unanimous-decision heavyweight loss to former Strikeforce light heavyweight champ “King Mo” Muhammed Lawal in March at Bellator 175.
“Why would I want to keep fighting wrestlers? I want to get in the cage. I’m 39 years old and fighting 17 years. I want to get in the cage and entertain fans,”…