Report: Chris Leben cut 21 pounds in 24 hours for Mark Munoz fight

Is that cut enough to stop a fight? Or was fatigue the more likely culprit? Photo by Tracy Lee via Yahoo! Sports

After just one round inside the cage with Mark Munoz last night (Sat., Nov. 5, 2011) at UFC 138 in Birmingham, England, Chris Leben was visibly winded.

I'm talking hands on hips, sucking air like a vaccum. He was gassed and it greatly affected his performance. He ultimately lost the fight after his corner called a stop to it at the end of the second round due to his not being able to see via a cut above his eye.

Upon second viewing, though, "The Crippler's" eye looked okay mere moments after he was attended to by ringside physicians. He said he was "choking on blood" but it certainly didn't look that bad.

As it turns out, his corner had more than one reason to be concerned.

According to a report from Fighters Only, Leben had a terrible weight cut that resulted in his having to lose 21 pounds in just 24 hours. It was so bad, in fact, that officials were apparently monitoring the situation and came extremely close to calling off the fight altogether.

Here's more from the report:

A source close to Leben told Fighters Only on Friday that Leben had been left "shattered" by the amount of weight he had to cut on weigh-in day.

He was in the hotel sauna from Friday morning hooded up and wearing layers of clothing as he sweated water out of his body.

His dehydration and general condition was such that one of the medical team backstage said Leben would be pulled from the fight if thing deteriorated any further.

Cutting weight is nothing new in combat sports, as men like Jon Jones and Forrest Griffin have been known to cut between 20-40 pounds leading up to their fights in the light heavyweight division.

But not in 24 hours. That is, to put it bluntly, absurd.

Fierce competitor that he is, Leben soldiered on and went ahead with the fight but it was obvious from the word go he simply wasn't himself.

And now we know why.

Anyone think this diminishes Munoz's victory? And should fighters be allowed to compete if they have to cut that much weight in that short a time span?

Opinions, please.

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