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Miesha Tate’s coach says weight cut was ‘a little bit tougher’ than usual

LAS VEGAS — Miesha Tate nearly missed the window to weigh-in Friday morning for UFC 200, because she was having a harder time cutting weight than usual, according to her coach.

Tate's coach Robert Follis told Submission Radio that the UFC women's bantamweight champion's weight was just not coming off as quickly as it usually does. Tate was almost late for the 8 a.m.-to-10 a.m. weigh-in here at Monte Carlo, but checked in before 10 and hit the scale at 10:02 a.m.

A UFC spokesperson said if Tate had missed the two-hour window, her main event title fight with Amanda Nunes would have been off.

"It was just a little bit tougher than we're used to, but it wasn't outrageous," said Follis, the head coach of Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas. "It just took a little bit longer than what we're used to. Just her body wasn't letting the water go as well as it normally does. But it wasn't a big deal, either.

"We planned for a title fight and obviously missing it was a big deal. We were confident we were gonna make it, but you never know until you get on the official scale. Our scale said we were on and we were waiting to get on the official one, make sure there wasn't any discrepancy."

Tate had to make 135 or below for the title fight to be official. Her manager Josh James told MMA Fighting in a statement that Tate was simply using all the minutes allocated for her to make the weight.

"Miesha has always been a person that uses all the time given to her for preparation whether it's a fight or weigh-ins," James said.

Tate came in right after Kelvin Gastelum and Johny Hendricks, who missed weight by 1/4 of a pound. If Tate came in late and also missed weight, Nevada Athletic Commission executive director Bob Bennett told MMA Fighting that the fight would likely be off, though he said he'd be willing to discuss matters with the UFC.

Follis does not envision a tougher weight cut hurting Tate in the fight Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena.

"I don't think so," he said. "Nah. We've had weight cuts like this before that we're down to the wire and gone out and performed very well. The last one, we rolled in at the last minute. We don't like wasting time and sometimes it gets a little too close. But we've never missed. This is another one we've made. Just because it was close doesn't mean we didn't make it."

The early weigh-ins are a whole new world for the UFC and commissions. The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) got the ball rolling by passing new regulations in February and the UFC is thinking about adopting an early weigh-in permanently. The forthcoming events this summer will all feature early weigh-ins. The UFC petitioned Nevada to do it this week for the three International Fight Week events and it was approved.

A morning weigh-in has been universally favored by fighters, who are given more time to rehydrate and now no longer have to sit dehydrated waiting for the weigh-in show. There will still be a ceremonial TV weigh-in show Friday afternoon on FS1 where the official weights from the morning will be announced.

"Love it," Follis said of the early weigh-ins. "It's great for the fighters. I've actually been talking about this for years and years. Why aren't we weighing in earlier and doing a mock weigh-in? I've been saying that for years. If we truly care about the fighters, let's get them on weight, get them on a scale, get them rehydrated, give them longer to let their body re-acclimate. So, I think this is wonderful that the commission and the UFC has pushed for this to happen. It's going to be great for the fighters in the long run."

There was a hubbub in the Monte Carlo ballroom as officials and media waited for Tate to come in, many not knowing what would happen if she was late. Follis said the champion had to block all that out before she hit the scale.

"You manage that commotion," Follis said. "This isn't the first time we've been close with fighters. I mean, it happens. Cutting weight is not a science, it's an art. Sometimes things change a little bit and it took a little bit longer to get it off, but we knew we were gonna get it off and we went in and got the job done. Here we are fighting for the title. Now it's all done."

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