Zak Cummings makes 'no excuses' for cutting 42 of 50 pounds, missing weight at UFC Ultimate Fighter (TUF): 'China'

Zak Cummings - Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

Zak Cummings was slated to fight at The Ultimate Fighter (TUF): "China" Finale in Macau, China, earlier this month; however, he came in seven pounds heavy for his 170-pound fight against Alberto Mina, forcing the last-minute cancellation of the Welterweight showdown. Two weeks removed from the disappointment, Cummings today explained how hairy the situation was behind the scenes.

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) had no choice but to scrap the Welterweight match between Zak Cummings vs. Alberto Mina at the eleventh hour because of a weighty issue leading up to The Ultimate Fighter (TUF): "China" Finale weigh in at Cotai Arena in Macau, China, on March 1, 2014.

That's because Cummings missed weight by a whopping eight pounds (see event results here), which was quite a bit more than the Mina camp was comfortable with even if it meant earning a percentage of his opponent's purse win, lose or draw.

But, even if Mina did agree to meet at a catchweight, chances are the medical team wouldn't have let Cummings step inside the Octagon.

In a detailed -- and somewhat disturbing -- Facebook entry, Cummings today detailed his grueling odyssey to reach 177 pounds an hour before the weigh in, which still would have been six pounds over the 171-pound division limit in non-title fights.


"I would like to address what happened this past weekend in Macau. I under no circumstances will be making any excuse for not doing what I was suppose to do which was make weight for my upcoming fight. I am ashamed, embarrassed, and completely upset with myself. I publicly need to apologize to Alberto Mina, his team and supporters, the UFC, Macau, China, my gym, friends, family and all my supporters. I am so incredibly sorry to let you all down. My job was to make 171.0 and no less and I failed my job. I did want to share a few things with everyone. NO, these are in no way excuses, just a few facts that might shed some light on the terrible event that happened. I accepted this fight with the month of Feb to prepare and cut weight. Due to personal events such as taking care of my father until he passed away and then healing an injury, I was 217lbs when I accepted the fight. I was just healing up and started back in the gym. I was about to let the UFC know that I’m feeling better and will be ready to go in a couple months. They contacted be first. The next day, I left for an amazing trip to Singapore, Diego Garcia and Bahrain to visit the military troops with a 4 other fighters. I agreed to go on this trip after my injury and I knew I wouldn’t be fighting soon. I spent 10 days traveling and then 10 days in the gym before leaving for China. In China I cut everyday being there while eating very low amounts. I didn’t sleep at all the night before weigh ins due to my body beginning to shutdown and was in so much discomforting pain. On the day of weigh ins I cut down to 176lbs which was 5lbs over with a few hours left. I though everything was right on track. I got back in the sauna and hot baths multiple times and my body just stopped. No more sweat, no more weight was coming off. I just hit an absolute wall. While in my room getting stuff together for weigh ins my body started cringing with pain and losing my vision and on the verge of passing out with every movement. I became very concerned for my health and did the ultimate no no which was take a few gulps of water. I was the 1st fighter to see the doctors for medicals and the doctors saw how bad I was and became very concerned. They knew they had to figure something out quick and could not wait till the official weigh in because my body needed fluids so badly to function. They weighed me and I was 177.6, which was 6 and half pounds over my allotted weight of 171. While waiting my body was shutting down and I was left on the concrete floor in the worst pain of my life with my corners, UFC personnel, and physicians surrounding me. They offered Alberto a catch weight to keep the fight scheduled where his coaches advised him to turn down. In all honesty even if they accepted the catch weight I don’t think the physicians were going to medically release me. All that was said was I was 8 pounds over and the fight was cancelled. This was true and I can’t deny it. When it was all said and done, I cut 42 pounds and end up falling short ending with me curled up on a floor with my friends, family and others concerned about my health. I’ve had some very hard cuts before which left me in pain but never have I been legitimately concerned about loosing me life. Hindsight I should have never taken the fight and attempted this craziness, BUT I DID. Which makes me responsible for not making the weight. Again, no excuse; I messed up and will regret it forever. I am extremely sorry but I will take this, learn from it and be back stronger. Thank you for standing by me"
After reading what Cummings endured, it should make mixed martial arts (MMA) promoters concerned that fighters are accepting tilts on such short notice, especially after two MMA related deaths (one from cutting weight) already having occurred in such a short time span.

Of course, Cummings should have never put himself in that situation, but when opportunity knocks -- and funds are low -- it's hard to just say, "Thanks, but no thanks."
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