UFC Tampa’s main event could be switched out at the last minute.
Former UFC strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk has informed the promotion more than a week ago that she would be unable to make the non-title limit of 116 lbs for her showdown with Michelle Waterson. Ordinarily, we’d see a catchweight agreed upon by the two parties, but a report from Combate says that Waterson is refusing a catchweight and turned down replacement opponents Mackenzie Dern and Amanda Ribas, which is the only other strawweight matchup on the card.
ESPN’s Ariel Helwani reported on Wednesday that the UFC has discussed either moving the bout to a November show or having Waterson face recently dethroned champion Jessica Andrade at UFC 244.
Then, there’s this:
If she misses weight but the fight proceeds, Jedrzejczyk would have to pay Waterson 30 percent of her purse, per the Florida State Boxing Commission. Another option discussed was that the UFC would pay the fine on behalf of Jedrzejczyk because the UFC was notified of her weight issues days ago. The UFC has declined that option so far, and historically doesn’t pay a fighter’s fine.
…But wait! There is another twist to the tale, as Jedrzejczyk suddenly is going to give it a go and try to make 116 lbs.
I’m told Joanna Jędrzejczyk had a good workout this AM and does not want the fight to get canceled. After it was made clear Team Waterson was not interested in a catchweight, JJ has decided to do everything — within reason — to make 116. She‘ll be at open workout later today.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) October 9, 2019
Jedrzejczyk has not competed at strawweight since beating Tecia Torres in July of 2018. She went up to flyweight to challenge for the vacant title against Valentina Shevchenko at UFC 231 last December, losing a unanimous decision.
If Jedrzejczyk vs. Waterson is off this card, Cub Swanson vs. Kron Gracie would be promoted to the main event. We will keep monitoring this situation as it unfolds.