Luke Rockhold’s days as a middleweight are numbered.
As he prepares to battle Yoel Romero in the UFC 221 main event with the interim middleweight title on the line, Rockhold knows that it won’t be much longer when he’s no longer willing to cut down to 185 pounds.
Rockhold has said numerous times in the past that it’s a struggle to cut weight down to the middleweight limit, especially considering he’s been in so many title fights where athletes don’t receive an extra one-pound allowance.
As confident as Rockhold might be about making 185 pounds this weekend and then performing on Saturday night against Romero, he knows he only has so much time left before he’s destined to move up to light heavyweight.
“It never gets any easier. I’m getting older and my bones are getting thicker and it gets harder to get down to this weight,” Rockhold explained during the UFC 221 open workouts.
“Having this open workout on a Friday, it’s tough. But I feel good. I’ve got a great team around me with [George] Lockhart and [Dan] Leith, they’ve got my nutrition down to a science. I’m ahead of schedule this time around and I’ll be fine, but 205 [pounds] is imminent.”
It wasn’t all that long ago when Rockhold even stated that he was willing to go to heavyweight when he was pursuing a matchup with former champion Fabricio Werdum, although that fight never actually came together.
“DC moving up to heavyweight. He’s not coming back, so I’ll be up there soon” ~ Luke Rockhold on a move to 205 pounds
Perhaps the biggest roadblock that stopped Rockhold from moving to light heavyweight previously was the potential for a clash against his close friend and teammate Daniel Cormier.
That may no longer be a problem as Cormier is moving up to heavyweight to challenge Stipe Miocic at UFC 226 in July and Rockhold believes that will open the door for his transition to 205 pounds in the near future.
“DC moving up to heavyweight. He’s not coming back, so I’ll be up there soon,” Rockhold stated. “Yes, I’ve mentioned that many times [that I’m moving to light heavyweight].
“It’s imminent. I’ll be up there soon.”
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