Newly ranked ‘Action Man’ still trying to figure out ‘correct’ UFC middleweight body

Chris Curtis prefers to struggle with size disavantadge in the UFC middleweight division.

By: Lucas Rezende | 4 months ago
Newly ranked ‘Action Man’ still trying to figure out ‘correct’ UFC middleweight body
April 7, 2023, Miami, Florida, MIAMI, FLORIDA, United States: MIAMI, FLORIDA -April 7: Chris Curtis steps on the scale for the official weigh-ins at UFC287 - Pereira v Adesanya 2 at Hilton Downtown Miami on April 7, 2023 in Miami, Florida Miami, Florida United States - ZUMAp175 20230407_zsa_p175_005 Copyright: xLouisxGrassex

It seems that UFC middleweight Chris Curtis has finally decided the weight class he wants to stay at for the rest of his career. While the ‘Action Man’ has been known to fluctuate between divisions, going as far as light heavyweight at a certain point, he is ready to call the 185-pound class home, even if it is not a perfect fit for him.

Chris Curtis is now a ranked UFC middleweight

While Curtis understands that he has a better frame for the current welterweight division picture, the 35-year-old is unwilling to deal with the rough weight cut anymore. In fact, when the Action Man won enough fights to end up becoming a ranked UFC middleweight (currently sitting at the 14th spot), that was enough for him to make the call to stay at the heavier weight class for good.

“I could make 170, but it sucks,” Curtis told MMA Junkie Radio. “One-seventy requires a significant sacrifice of lifestyle and happiness, and just my quality of life dips tremendously at ’70 – but I know I could still do it. I always said when I got signed, you know ’85, I was playing with house money, because I’m never supposed to be here. Then I f*cked around and got ranked.

“So now, I’m not really so sure if I’m playing with house money anymore because they have this expectation of me, but I’ve been a welterweight my entire career, we put on some weight to fight at ’85, then we had to lose weight because I got too big. So, we’re still trying to figure out my correct ’85 body size.”

Curtis had a long career at welterweight

The last time Curtis fought at middleweight (before joining the UFC) dates back to January 2021, at XMMA 1. Prior to that regional card, the 35-year-old had built an entire career at welterweight, making it to the semi-finals in the 2019 PFL tournament and even winning and defending the CES MMA belt.

For those reasons, Curtis explained he had to reinvent himself when he decided to continue his career in the UFC middleweight division. Fortunately enough for the Action Man, the decision paid off. However, the adaptation process is still a work in progress for the time being.

“I had to re-learn how to fight at middleweight,” Curtis said. “I literally had to go change style, had to change my diet – I got big, I got small. It’s been a work in progress. But, you know, with these adjustments, if I’m not performing at a level that I feel I could at ’85, just because of my size, then I will entertain going back to ’70. I don’t want to, but my goal is to do this as long as I can, as successfully as I can.”

“At ’85, I’ve been doing well, but you know I’m 5’10”, 200 pounds, 205 on my heaviest day. You got guys walking around 220 at this weight. I don’t want to be a welterweight, man. God, that was so bad. But if it comes down to me not performing or me having to suffer, I’m going to choose to suffer every time.”

Catch Chris Curtis at UFC 289

In his last outing, back in April 2023, Chris Curtis (30-10) dropped a unanimous decision to Kelvin Gastelum. The 35-year-old’s last win came just before that, when he knocked out Joaquin Buckley in December 2022.

Now, Curtis is expected to take on UFC middleweight prospect Nassourdine Imavov, at UFC 289, in Vancouver, Canada. The June 10 card is scheduled to be headlined by a women’s bantamweight title fight between champion Amanda Nunes and challenger Irene Aldana.

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About the author
Lucas Rezende
Lucas Rezende

Lucas Rezende is a Brazilian journalist and writer from Belem, Para. He has been covering MMA since 2012 and contributing with Bloody Elbow since March 2015. When not writing, Lucas also teaches English. In his free time, he enjoys reading, slapping the bass guitar and traveling.

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