Darren Till is this month’s posterchild for missing weight. Worse, he missed weight for a #1 contender spot, won, and still got the title shot vs. welterweight champ Tyron Woodley in the main event of UFC 229 on Saturday. Whether Till makes weight is one of the events significant storylines, and the UFC even has Kamaru Usman ready to weigh in if Till fails.
George Lockhart’s protege, nutritionist Eoghan Gallagher, spoke with Chuck Mindenhall for MMA Fighting, and expressed certaintly that his fighter makes 170 on Friday.
“We’re super happy with where he’s at,” said Gallagher. “We were working with a more limited time frame than expected. Darren had some visa issues getting into the U.S. We wanted to get out here to do four weeks, but we only got two-and-a-half basically. So under the circumstances we’re doing amazing. The last part of the cut is always going to suck. He said it himself earlier, fighters who say they’ve had a great cut, it’s a cover up.”
“He is really a unique individual. He’s a lanky guy, just has a strange anatomy. His body doesn’t respond to certain things the way I expected it to, so I have made adjustments along the way. But he’s in a very good place mentally.”
“This culture of guys a week out, two weeks out with the sauna suits on already, hitting pads and things like that … that makes the hair stand up on the back of my neck. That’s something we want to move away from it. The larger part of our cuts are done within 72 hours, so that we have the body under strenuous conditions for the least amount of time possible. So, just minor changes were made this camp.”
“I think the ‘he should not fight at 170’ talks are extremely blown out of proportion. I think that realistically he can make welterweight for years to come, but just from speaking to him — and this is a trend I hope continues in this sport — it seems like he wants to go to 185 sooner rather than later.”
Gallagher said Till wants to move up so his body is under less stress, but also suspected that it may play a role that the middleweight division is more in need of a young star than is welterweight.