Photo of Anthony Johnson missing weight courtesy of Josh Hedges via Zuffa LLC/Getty Images.
Probably wasn't hard to see this one coming.
Following his submission loss to Vitor Belfort last Saturday night (Jan. 14, 2012) at the HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has officially released Anthony Johnson from his ZUFFA contract.
Johnson failed to make weight for his UFC 142: "Aldo vs. Mendes" co-main event against "The Phenom," tipping the scale at a whopping 197-pounds, a full 11 pounds over the 186-pound contractual limit.
It was the third time "Rumble" missed weight in his UFC career. The first came against Rich Clementi at UFC 76 and then again opposite Yoshiyuki Yoshida at UFC 104.
"Three strikes and you're out. This is his third time that he hasn't made weight. He's the co-main event in a huge fight down here in Brazil and this one was a bad one. Rumble Johnson did the damage to himself. To be that unprofessional and not come in on weight, and to be that far off when you used to fight at 170, now you went to 185 pounds so you wouldn't have trouble making weight, and this is your worst weight cut ever? That's at a detriment to himself."
Johnson claims he was on target for his middleweight debut, until his body betrayed him just hours before hitting the scale. On the advice of attending physicians, he rehydrated to preserve his health at the expense of making weight.
Belfort agreed to proceed as planned and gave Johnson a stipulation of making 205-pounds by fight night, for which he did. It kept the co-main event intact and allowed the Brazilian to get his revenge the good, old-fashioned way.