UFC Sao Paulo (aka UFC Fight Night: Almeida vs. Lewis aka UFC Fight Night 231 aka UFC on ESPN+ 89) happens tomorrow Saturday, November 4, 2023 at Ginásio do Ibirapuera in São Paulo, Brazil. The card is headlined by heavyweights Derrick Lewis vs. Jailton Almeida.
There was also supposed to be a main card bout between Ismail Bonfim and Vinc Pichel at lightweight. Unfortunately, Ismael Bonfim missed weight by three and one half pounds (coming in at 159.5 pounds) and his opponent Vinc Pinchel elected to call off the fight.
Vinc Pichel explains UFC Sao Paulo fight cancellation
Vinc Pichel posted on X to reveal his thinking behind the decision to call off the fight.
“So as you know my fight is cancelled. My opponent didn’t even try to make weight and I decided to take away his ability to fight and make money for this unprofessionalism which I’m sure he regrets. I am huge on self responsibility and he showed none by his actions and by missing weight by so much so I decided to give him some for his actions.
“I’m sorry to everyone who was excited to watch me throw down and also happy to ruin parleys against me at the same time. In my 15+ year career I have never missed weight. If you are upset about my decision, I’m sorry but there is no one else to blame buy my opponent.
“You will see me fight again soon!”
Pichel vs Bonfirm wasn’t the only cancellation on the card. We also saw a fight cancelled between Victor Hugo and Daniel Marcos after Hugo came in at 138.5 pounds, two and one-half pounds over the bantamweight limit.
We could have lost a third fight when Eduarda Moura came in at 119.5 pounds — four and one-half pounds over the strawweight limit. Despite the relative weight miss being far higher than the ones impacting the cancelled bouts, Montserrat Ruiz elected to go ahead and face Moura.
Stephen Thompson wanted to teach Michel Pereira a similar lesson
It hasn’t been that long ago since Stephen Thompson refused to face Michel Pereira at UFC 291 in an effort to teach him a lesson for missing weight, and refused a catchweight bout.
“I want everybody to know right now in the 170 division, that if you’re going to fight me now you better be on weight or it’s not going to happen,” he said.
“I’m at a place in my career where I want to fight fairly. I don’t want to play any games.
“I don’t know what needs to be done but I think there should be more and greater consequences for these guys who are coming in with no integrity and no honor to make weight.”
It’s too bad that UFC management was not happy with Stephen Thompson’s decision.
Dana White made an example out of ‘Wonderboy’
Thompson felt the UFC should compensate him for showing up to his fight and making weight even when his opponent didn’t.
But Dana White was quick to set Thompson straight. If he wants to get paid, it’s not enough to just show up and be professional. He has to take the fight, no matter if his opponent is on weight or not.
“You decided not to fight,” White said of Thomspon. “(Pereira) was three pounds overweight. You get a piece of his purse if you take the fight…
“We also offered him another fight. There’s a much bigger story behind the scenes.
“No, you don’t just show up and say ‘yeah, I’m not going to fight, I want a quarter of a million dollars.’ That’s not the way it works. Hasn’t worked that way for anybody.”
Hopefully, Vinc Pichel doesn’t find himself the victim of the lesson he’s trying to teach Ismail Bonfim.
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