With Matt Serra Unavailable, Chris Weidman's Father to Corner Him at UFC 162

John HeinisSenior Analyst IJuly 4, 2013

July 11, 2012; San Jose, CA, USA; Chris Weidman (center) celebrates with his team after defeating Mark Munoz (not pictured) in the middleweight bout of the UFC on Fuel TV at HP Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Due to medical issues and the birth of his third daughter, Matt Serra won't be able to corner his star pupil, Chris Weidman, in the UFC 162 headliner against Anderson Silva (via MMA Fighting). 

However, "The All-American" saw the situation as a blessing in disguise, since his father, Charlie Weidman, will now be able to corner his son for the biggest fight of his life. 

Weidman discussed the matter at length with ESPN

"Having my dad out there brings another dynamic," Weidman told Franklin McNeil. "He's real spiritual. It's important for me to be spiritual, in the right place. He'll pray for me before I go out. And that's a huge part of me having an advantage going against Anderson Silva. [My father] has been driving me to wrestling camps and every match that I've had growing up, since second grade -- sitting in the stands. He's never been in my corner, even for wrestling. This is his first time .. "He's my biggest fan. This is a great thing for him, too. It's like a lifetime dream; he's happy." 

The undefeated prospect looks to bring his record to 10-0 against Silva, widely recognized as the greatest MMA fighter of all time. 

The pound-for-pound great is 16-0 inside the Octagon with 14 finishes, and has faced few challenges in that span outside of his two encounters with American rival Chael Sonnen. 

However, Weidman's elite blend of wrestling and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu could give "The Spider" a tough challenge on Saturday night at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.

Serra, a former UFC welterweight champ, spoke with ESPN as well, expressing his belief that Weidman has everyone he needs in his corner for UFC 162. 

"I feel very confident in Chris for this fight," Serra said. "He's got all the guys in his corner: Ray Longo for striking, John Danaher for the ground, jiu-jitsu, and I think it's nice that he got his father in there. It might be more important [having Charlie Weidman] than having me there right now. It will mean more for him, his spirit. It's a beautiful thing, having his father in the corner." 

"The Terror" put New York's Serra-Longo Fight Team on the map when he shocked the world by capturing the welterweight strap from Georges St-Pierre at UFC 69 in April 2007. 

Will Weidman be able to pull off a similar feat by stopping Silva's reign atop the middleweight division this weekend?


John Heinis is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMA Editor for eDraft.com and contributes MMA videos to The Young Turks Sports Show.