Yoel Romero loses interim title shot after missing weight and Dana White isn't actually angry
Yoel Romero won't be fighting for the interim UFC middleweight belt in Perth.
We still have a title fight of sorts in UFC 221's main event after Yoel Romero missed weight.
The original headliner was set to be an undisputed middleweight championship bout between Robert Whittaker and Luke Rockhold. However, a slew on injuries and ailments forced 'Bobby Knuckles' to pull out. Four weeks out from fight night, Yoel Romero was announced as his replacement and the fight was changed to an interim title bout.
Remarkably, this would have meant that 'the Soldier of God' would be competing in back-to-back interim title fights. The Cuban lost to Whittaker for the interim strap in his last trip to the Octagon. He won't be completing this unusual feat anymore though after he came in heavy.
At the first attempt, Romero tipped the scales at 188.3 lbs. He had two hours to drop the extra weight, but still engaged in the obligatory staredown with the former champion on stage.
The two had a heated verbal exchange with Rockhold confirming to Megan Olivi afterwards that he was upset with Romero's lack of professionalism. He then took a shot at his adversary on Twitter, poking fun at his open workout during which he danced with fans.
When Romero reemerged, he was lighter but still hadn't reached the 185 lb limit. This time, he came in at 187.7 lbs.
Should have be doing the salsa in the sauna. Some bullshit as usual
— Luke Rockhold (@LukeRockhold) February 10, 2018
The headliner will still go ahead, but only Rockhold will be able to win the belt with a victory. The former champion weighed in at 185 lbs on the button.
Dana White is surprisingly fine with what happened on Saturday night. As far as he sees it, the 40-year-old stepped in on short notice and was unable to have a full training camp. He gave his response to Brett Okamoto of ESPN via text.
Dana White, via text, on UFC 221: “Romero took this fight on short notice when Whittaker fell out and he didn’t get a full camp. I appreciate him stepping up and taking the fight. If wins he doesn’t get the belt, if Rockhold wins he’s the interim champ”
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) February 10, 2018