's move down to light heavyweight hit a significant snag on Monday, as the former UFC heavyweight champ missed weight by 10 pounds for Tuesday's clash with Daniel Tabera
(16-3-3) at Israel FC: Genesis.
Rodriguez (44-11) showed up to Monday's weigh-ins looking "extremely exhausted," according to LowKick.com
, which also spoke with Rodriguez's manager after the former UFC titleholder clocked in at 215 pounds.
"Ricco had a very tough time making weight because of the old injury that came back two days ago," Tiago Okamura said. "He trained really hard. He also had a staph infection one month ago, so it's not so easy to cut so much weight after a long recovery process. We settled the issue with Daniel Tabera and his camp, so the fight will go as planned."
Settling the issue in this case reportedly consisted of Rodriguez voluntarily forfeiting 20% of his purse to Tabera as a result of his failed attempt to make weight. While that's a fairly common penalty levied by many state athletic commissions in the U.S., there's no such oversight in place in Israel.
Rodriguez acknowledged that he "didn't have to do it," but felt it was only fair to his opponent, saying, "He prepared to fight a light heavyweight, so I have to compensate him."
That's a noble enough impulse from the former champ, but it's hard not to wonder how he'll look come fight night. If his efforts truly were hindered by an existing injury that was severe enough to interfere with his weight cut as recently as two days ago, that doesn't bode well for his chances on Tuesday.
Rodriguez comes into this bout riding a nine-fight win streak, and even if he hadn't showed up significantly overweight the 6'4" Rodriguez would still have held a size advantage over the 5'11" Tabera.
Rodriguez has always been a big heavyweight, and at times has ballooned up to well over 300 pounds, but had recently slimmed down to as little as 218 pounds when he announced his intention to move to light heavyweight
. The fact that he struggled just to get down to 215 pounds for this fight can't be a good sign.
Add in the talk of injuries and staph infections, not to mention a taxing weight cut, and the big question for Rodriguez is just how much gas will he have in the tank at fight time? As sharp as Rodriguez has looked recently when he shows up in good shape, trying to limp his way through this one could have disastrous consequences.