UFC 130 Aftermath: Roy Nelson Should Drop the "Fat Fighter" Gimmick

Darren WongSenior Analyst IMay 29, 2011

UNCASVILLE, CT - MAY 16:  Roy Nelson (White Trunks) of the Lions Den celebrates after beating Brad Imes MilesTech Fighting System during their bout presented by the International Fighting League at the Mohegan Sun Arena May 16, 2008 in Uncasville, Connecticut.  (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)
Al Bello/Getty Images

Last night at UFC 130, Roy Nelson got manhandled, wrestled, and physically dominated by Frank Mir.

This isn't the first time Nelson has been manhandled by a bigger and more powerful heavyweight, and if Nelson continues to fight at heavyweight, it won't be the last.

It's time for Roy Nelson to seriously consider a drop down to the 205 pound division.

Despite Nelson's quick dismissal of the possibility, it would be quite possible for him to make the 205 pound weight limit.


Roy Nelson is Not Too Big For 205

When somebody asks Roy Nelson if he could make 205, he usually responds with something like "yeah, I could make 205 if I cut off my leg," to try to display how insane he thinks the idea is.

However, if you look at Nelson's body, it should be quite easy to see that Nelson's frame isn't too big for 205 pounds. In fact, he should probably be fighting at 185 pounds like Tim Boetsch.

If you ever see professional fighters in person, you'll understand what I mean.

In person, most fighters look much larger than their actual weigh in weights. Dominick Cruz, the UFC 135 pound champion, has about the same frame as your average in-shape guy who walks around at 170 pounds.

Georges St-Pierre is a rock solid 190 pounds, but would be over 200 pounds if he wasn't in such incredible shape.

Guys like Chuck Liddell and Quinton Jackson are hulking human specimens with absurd amounts of muscle.

If Nelson even got into the kind of physical condition that Liddell is in, he'd easily make 205 pounds and could probably make 185 pounds if he took the weight cut seriously like most other MMA fighters do.

If you sawed off the part of Nelson's gut that hangs over his shorts, you'd probably already have him down to 230 pounds. A good weight cut after that, and he'd easily make the 205 pound limit.

Unfortunately, Nelson is probably to stubborn to actually do so.


Reasons Why Roy Nelson Doesn't Want To Cut Down To 205 Pounds

In order to make the 205 pound limit, Nelson would be forced to eat in a healthy manner.

That means no more Burger King diet.

It would also mean that he'd have to train a bit harder, and probably seek out some good advice from somebody like Mike Dolce on how to cut weight properly.

Roy Nelson is probably too lazy to do those things.

He'd also probably have to deal with having loose skin as a result from losing all that excess weight.

One real competitive reason Nelson might want to stay at heavyweight is because it's the weakest division. The fighters simply aren't as good at heavyweight, and Nelson might have trouble competing with a deeper 205 pound division.

The other big reason Nelson might hesitate is that he might not want to give up his gimick of being the fat guy who can fight.  There is a certain appeal to being that guy that sets him apart from other fighters. If Nelson moves to 205, he becomes just another ordinary fighter.


Roy Nelson's Delusions

Instead of realizing that he's too fat and needs to slim down, Nelson instead went the other way after the fight, hinting that he needs to get "bigger, faster, stronger."

But if Nelson gets bigger, he's certainly not getting faster, and he's only going to get weaker as he gasses out even earlier into fights.

Aside from that delusion, Nelson also brushed off the loss stating that it was really only wrestling that won Mir the decision and that the striking was even, if not in Nelson's favor.

Nelson is wrong about that as well, but even if he wasn't, there's no getting around the fact that he was out-struck badly by Junior Dos Santos in his last fight, and out-hustled by Mir in this one.


But Isn't Nelson's Belly An Advantage

On the TUF reality series, we saw that when Nelson gets on top of somebody, his belly can help pin his opponent down.

But whatever advantage he gains from that position is vastly outweighed by the disadvantage that comes from being slow and out of shape.


Could Nelson Become A Smaller Heavyweight?

Cain Velasquez and Fedor Emelianenko are both small and extremely successful heavyweights.

Fedor Emelianenko has approximately the same frame as Nelson.  If Nelson got down to around 225 pounds, he could still fight at heavyweight, and would possibly still have more quickness and mobility than some of the larger plodding heavyweights.



The "Fat Fighter" experiment should be over.

We've seen how good of a fighter a fat Roy Nelson is, and while he's a decent fighter, he's certainly not a great one.

So if Nelson stays fat, he'll win some, lose some, and will remembered only as "that fat fighter."

If Nelson loses some serious weight, he risks losing his fat man gimmick.

Still, losing some serious weight is Nelson's only chance of being anything but another also-ran in the UFC heavyweight division.


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