Chris Weidman calls UFC 292 bout order ‘disrespectful’

UFC 292 is tonight. But the stacked card has been branded 'disrespectful' by a big name who finds himself on the prelim card.

By: Tim Bissell | 1 month ago

UFC 292 called ‘disrespectful’ by former champ

Tonight’s UFC 292 headliner Sean O’Malley had been a faithful student of Chael Sonnen’s “fight the worst guy on the best spot on the card” lesson. However, though he undoubtedly has the best spot on this weekend’s card he’s now graduated to having to fight the best guy, too (this time in the shape of UFC bantamweight champ Aljamain Sterling).

UFC 292's Chris Weidman.
Chris Weidman at the TD Garden in 2019. IMAGO/ZUMA Wire | Vanessa Carvalho

One UFC 292 fighter who is far from following Sonnen’s teachings is former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman. At TD Garden this week he finds himself on meh spot on the card facing a guy who is no push-over.

Weidman is currently set to headline the prelim card versus tough vet Brad Tavares. Weidman, who has two wins over one of the sports GOATs and is returning after two years on the sidelines, will be competing before late replacement Da’Mon Blackshear takes on Mario Bautista.

Here’s Weidman (who called himself the new ‘King of the Prelims’) telling ESPN that he’s not happy about the situation.

“It’s kind of disrespectful, to be honest,” he said. “I’m not going to pretend like it’s not. To be out for two years with an injury. I broke my leg on the mats of the UFC on a pay-per-view, first card ever since COVID, first fully packed arena in Jacksonville … put my body on the line and they put me on a prelim? … That’s a bad idea.”

Weidman added that he’ll be using the placement as “motivation”.

“Alright, at first you disrespect me like that. What, you think I’m done? No, I’m here to make a statement.”

Chris Weidman should be on the UFC 292 PPV

Weidman vs. Tavares is a former champ taking on a fighter who is also widely recognized among UFC fans (young and old). Their bout should be on the main card. This is especially true given the narrative heading into this one, with Weidman coming off such a catastrophic (and coincidental) injury and working his way back to fight in the Octagon.

UFC 292’s bout order isn’t the only thing Weidman has been outspoken about this year.

That’s a story that, if presented appropriately, could move people to buy a pay-per-view. I can imagine plenty of folks wanting to tune in to see if Weidman can finish off this story with his hand raised in the cage. Equally, I can imagine morbid curiosity getting the better of fans, too, convincing them to pay the price to see whether Weidman’s surgically repaired leg holds up at the first hurdle.

The obvious fight that could be replaced on the main card is Blackshear vs. Bautista. Both are fine and exciting fighters and on paper they could throw down a banger of a contest. But isn’t that exactly the kind of product you want to show on free TV, as the lead in to a big PPV?

A Fight of the Night between those two would be perfect to the whet the appetite (and loosen the purse strings) of UFC fans on the night. I think that would be a better table-setter than Weidman and Tavares, who, despite being worthy of being on the main card from a narrative stand point, aren’t expected to set the world on the fire with their performances.

What’s more, there’s even a chance that Weidman and Tavares’ fight could have a very unsatisfying ending. Is seeing the highly likely Weidman get beat up, in an either violent or boring way, going to have folks desperate to pay close to a $100 for more fights?

I guess we’ll see.

You know you can count on us for quick, consistent quality UFC 292 coverage. Bloody Elbow is an independent, reader supported publication. Please subscribe to our newsletter to keep up with our best work and learn how you can support the site.

Join the new Bloody Elbow

Our Substack is where we feature the work of writers like Zach Arnold, John Nash and Karim Zidan. We’re fighting for the sport, the fighters and the fans. Please help us by subscribing today.

Share this story

About the author
Tim Bissell
Tim Bissell

Tim Bissell is a writer, editor and deputy site manager for Bloody Elbow. He has covered combat sports since 2015. Tim covers news and events and has also written longform and investigative pieces. Among Tim's specialties are the intersections between crime and combat sports. Tim has also covered head trauma, concussions and CTE in great detail.

Tim is also BE's lead (only) sumo reporter. He blogs about that sport here and on his own substack, Sumo Stomp!

Email me at Nice messages will get a response.

More from the author

Bloody Elbow Podcast
Related Stories