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Ex-UFC champ Chris Weidman hopes to return at middleweight in April

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Chris Weidman
Thomas Lakes, MMA Fighting

Chris Weidman is putting an abrupt end to his light heavyweight experiment.

The former UFC middleweight champion announced via social media over the weekend that he plans to take his next fight at 185 pounds and is targeting an April return.

In his most recent outing, Weidman made his debut at 205 pounds against top contender Dominick Reyes, and the results were disastrous. In under two minutes, “The Devastator” caught him with a punch and knocked him out for his fifth loss in six fights. The outcome launched Reyes toward a title shot and near-upset of champion Jon Jones this past Saturday at UFC 247. Weidman’s future looked murky.

UFC President Dana White suggested he needed to talk to the 35-year-old ex-champ about his future. But Weidman declared his competitive days weren’t over.

Weidman rocketed to stardom with a pair of title fight wins over the seemingly indomitable Anderson Silva back in 2013, then successfully defended the middleweight championship twice more for a 13-0 start to his pro career. He then dropped the title to Luke Rockhold and suffered subsequent knockout losses to Yoel Romero, Gegard Mousasi, Ronaldo Souza, and Reyes. Only a submission win over Kelvin Gastelum has prevented Weidman from being on a six-fight skid.

Read Weidman’s full statement below:

I’ve been through the highest of highs and the lowest of lows in my fight career. I really love what I do, and I believe I still have some great moments ahead of me! Can’t wait to shut up all the haters! To all the people that have supported me through the ups and the downs, I appreciate it more than you know. I am more motivated than ever and I know the future is bright. Hopefully getting a fight booked around April back in the MW division!