UFC Vegas 72 held official weigh-ins on Friday, and unfortunately for Irina Alekseeva, her first outing in the octagon was a disastrous start. Alekseeva, who was set to make her debut in the bantamweight category, was four pounds over the weight limit at 140 pounds (including the one-pound allowance for non-title fights) for the fight against Stephanie Egger.
Egger, on the other hand, weighed in at 135 pounds, securing a five-pound advantage before the fight. Alekseeva had previously competed in the flyweight and featherweight categories before signing with the UFC. The fight, however, will go on as a catchweight, but Alekseeva will forfeit 30 percent of her purse as a penalty.
Unfortunately, Irina Alekseeva was not alone in missing the bantamweight limit. Hailey Cowan, also on her debut fight in the UFC, came in at 137.5 pounds, one-and-a-half pounds over the bantamweight limit, for her showdown against Jamey-Lyn Horth (135.5). Cowan will likewise suffer the consequences and will have to forfeit 20 percent of her purse as a penalty.
Cowan had already faced some difficulties, with her first two bookings getting canceled. Her first match was called off due to illness, and her second due to her opponent’s injury. In the main event bouts, the bantamweight contenders Song Yadong and Ricky Simon successfully made weight, both measuring 136 pounds. The use of the one-pound allowance permitted for non-title fights was a sign of their professionalism and respect towards the sport.