Search icon


12th Oct 2017

UFC star Paige VanZant swiftly deletes risque weight cut photo


Ben Kiely

Paige VanZant

It looks like Paige VanZant made the right decision to change weight classes.

We’re used to seeing Paige VanZant fighting at strawweight inside the Octagon, but in 2017, it was announced that the rising star would be moving up to the newly-formed women’s flyweight division.

“12 Gauge” was scheduled to make her divisional debut against veteran fighter Jessica Eye at the recent UFC 216 PPV. Unfortunately, she was forced to withdraw from the bout on short notice with a plethora of ailments, including a herniated disk, infections in both ears, pink eye and ring worm.

Although she has yet to book another bout, the 23-year-old’s plan is still to fight at 125 lbs before the year’s end. She seems to be enjoying the prospect of cutting less weight as she shared a couple of old photos of cuts she made to strawweight in previous camps.

Fighters cutting dangerous amounts of weight has been a huge problem in MMA since forever, but recent high-profile cases have brought the issue to light again.

Kevin Lee having to take the extra hour to make championship weight at UFC 216 the day after he claimed he still had 19 lbs left to cut got people talking. Plus that disturbing video at the Pancrase 290 weigh-ins only highlighted the problem more.

The other photo VanZant posted on Instagram was swiftly deleted, but perhaps gives a more accurate representation of how gruelling her cut was at strawweight was.

Paige VanZant

It’s strange to think that the emaciated fighter lying prone on the bathroom floor with her ribs jutting out of her body is the same one that won a lot of fans with her energetic routines on Dancing with the Stars. The caption with this photo before it was taken down was, ‘Never again. 125 is my division. I will take over.’

We’re not sure taking over 125 lbs is very likely with Valentina Shevchenko looking set to dominate that weight class, but one thing’s for sure, 115 lbs is not VanZant’s division.