UFC

Is Charles Oliveira still the UFC lightweight champion?

Is Charles Oliveira still the UFC lightweight champion?

Phoenix, AZ — It’s was a wild and unprecedented morning during the UFC 274 weigh-ins when  Charles Oliveira became the first reigning champion to miss weight on the scales ahead of his title defense. The lightweight stepped on just half a pound over and sent the MMA world into a tailspin.

What would happen to the fight? What would happen to the title? We’ve got some of those answers.

Watch Charles Oliveira miss weight for UFC 274

Shortly after the weigh-ins, a UFC official announced to the room that Oliveira was no longer the champion and would not be eligible for the title if he wins on Saturday night. His opponent, Justin Gaethje, who did make weight, will be eligible for the title if he wins. The title will remain vacant if Oliveira wins.

But then, an hour or so after that update an official email was sent to the media explaining that Oliveira is still champion but would “vacate” the moment the bell rings for the start of the UFC 247 main event. This might be done, in part, to allow Oliveira to hold the belt and be announced as champion on fight night but we’ll have to see how he’s introduced on Saturday.

“Due to the weight miss, Oliveira will forfeit a percentage of his purse,” the UFC wrote, not indicating the percentage. “As of this moment, Charles Oliveira remains the UFC Lightweight Champion, but upon the start of the Main Event Headliner tomorrow night he will vacate the 155-pound title. The fight will proceed as scheduled, but the championship will only be on the line for Gaethje. If Oliveira wins, he will be the number one contender for the vacant Lightweight Championship and will fight the next challenger for the undisputed title belt at a time and place to be determined.”

The only time this has happened was when Nicco Montaño was stripped of her title when she failed to weigh in for her fight.