To begin, I would like to acknowledge that I mean no disrespect to Chris Weidman or any other fighter mentioned in this article. However, the purpose of this article is to express my opinion on how I think Weidman is overrated. He is mentioned as a top fighter in the sport, but a deep look into his fight history tells a different story.
Rise to Stardom
Through 2011 to 2012, undefeated Chris Weidman was running through the somewhat depleted middleweight division. With wins over Tom Lawlor, Demian Maia, and Mark Munoz at this point, Weidman was prime for a title shot. But now let’s take a deeper dive into these names and how insignificant these wins actually were. While these are common names in the MMA community, do they propel you to the top of the sport? After the fight with Weidman, Munoz would lose three of his next five fights and decided to retire. While Demian Maia would drop down to welterweight and have great success, in hindsight he was undersized for the middleweight division. In my opinion, the middleweight division was at its weakest at this point, with most fighters either too old or cleared out by the defending champion. Nevertheless, Weidman would get a title shot and take full advantage of it, scoring a knockout against arguably the GOAT of the sport, Anderson Silva. This was a changing-of-the-guard moment for the division, with most experts predicting that Weidman would retain the title for the foreseeable future.
Weidman would rematch Silva, which turned into the infamous fight that Silva broke his leg throwing a low kick. He would then defeat Lyoto Machida and Vitor Belfort post-TRT exemption. Let’s just be honest, both of those guys continued fighting after this, but both were past their primes by the time they fought Weidman. He would then fight and lose to Luke Rockhold, who also happened to be the youngest fighter he would face during his championship run. Rockhold would TKO him in the 4th round after Weidman narrowly survived the 3rd. This would be his first professional loss and a turning point in Chris Weidman’s career.
Post Title Woes
After losing his belt to Rockhold in devastating fashion, Weidman would end up losing four out of his next five fights, losing all of them by KO or TKO. His only win came by submission against Kelvin Gastelum and his most recent loss was to Dominick Reyes, which was his light heavyweight debut. The news coming out as of right now is that he will be moving back down to middleweight for his next bout. With many questions to answer mostly about his chin and striking ability, we will see if he is able to rebound with several new contenders in the division he once owned. How were we so wrong about Weidman being the future of the middleweight division? I think it is clear with a deep dive through his resume that Weidman was over-hyped and took advantage of a weak division. Do you agree? Please let us know what you think in the comments!
Featured photo courtesy of LowKick MMA
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