The UFC is taking precautions ahead of next month’s welterweight championship bout between Tyron Woodley and Darren Till, as top-six contender Kamaru Usman is on tap as a potential replacement should either man withdraw from the main event at the last minute.
ESPN’s Brett Okamoto broke the news on Twitter, reporting that Usman will weigh-in and submit medicals during UFC 228 fight week.
Per his management, Usman will in fact submit medicals and weigh-in during fight week, in the event something happens to Woodley or Till before UFC 228 in Dallas. https://t.co/ON1tWzf7l1
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) August 9, 2018
This news shouldn’t come as a surprise given Till’s history of weight cutting. The top-ranked contender pushed himself to the brink of exhaustion to make weight for UFC Fight Night Liverpool, but was still unable to make 170-pounds and ended up weighing in several pounds overweight. Till won a controversial unanimous decision but was forced to forfeit 30 percent of his purse to opponent Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson, who he beat in the main event at Liverpool’s Echo Arena.
The 25-year-old also missed weight last year at UFC Fight Night 109, and has said that the real battle at UFC 228 is to safely cut down to 170 lbs.
Usman, the winner of The Ultimate Fighter 21, is undefeated in the UFC and broke into the top-six after his decision win over former two-time title challenge Demian Maia at UFC Fight Night 129. The 31-year-old also holds wins over the likes of Leon Edwards, Warlley Alves, and Sean Strickland.
UFC 228: Woodley vs. Till takes place next month, September 8 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.