UFC 225 main event in tatters as Yoel Romero misses weight... twice

Rosalie Gross
June 10, 2018

"It's going to be a five-round fight".

"There wouldn't be a fight", Whittaker said. Am I gonna get furious at you because you can't sit through a bad television show?

The 41-year-old Cuban's recent struggles come on the heels of an eight-fight win streak that began with an impressive opening-round KO of Clifford Starks in his promotional debut at UFC on Fox 7 in January 2013.

Romero earned his second shot at Whittaker by defeating Luke Rockhold earlier this year, although he missed weight for that bout.

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Romero started the third frame with desperation coursing through his veins, attacking wildly, and it worked.

Ten fighters on the card have either been a UFC champion or have fought for a title at some point in their careers. But Whittaker would manage to escape with his title despite a fifth round that could have been scored 10-8, but wasn't by any of the three judges, and impacted the two scorecards that were 48-47 for Whittaker and the one that was 48-47 for Romero.

The two fighters were introduced and faced off at the ceremonial weigh-ins later Friday. Romero landed a couple harsh knees from behind, but Whittaker stalled Romero's progress and the referee separated them with about 25 seconds left in the fight. Great. But the UFC wouldn't have been able to book him into another title fight immediately because he's already missed weight for two title fights. It's not only a fight for a fight - I want to fight for the title. Yes, it's their job to make weight. The whole notion of cutting 30-40 pounds just so you can have a size advantage over your opponent is ludicrous. Then again, he has constantly teetered in that narrow gray area between outright cheating and slightly questionable behavior. "Everything goes on as usual", UFC president Dana White said.

Because, sure, his performances in the Octagon have earned him a place in rarified air. Romero kept fighting with urgency, but Whittaker kept his distance as best he could jabbing and side-kicking.

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