Aspen Ladd’s fight against Macy Chiasson at UFC Vegas 38 this weekend has been canceled after disturbing scenes at the 26-year-old’s weigh-in.
On her first try, Ladd weighed 141.5 pounds (64 kg) for the bantam weight – 5.5 pounds (2.5 kg) over the 136 pounds (61 kg) limit. She stripped and undressed for her official attempt when UFC officials brought out a wall to hide her from view, but she still came in heavy weighing 137 pounds (62 kg).
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Fighting fans were alarmed by what they saw at the weigh-in when Ladd was shaking and looking visibly unstable, nearly collapsing at one point before being helped by officials.
Respected MMA journalist Ariel Helwani tweeted: “Aspen Ladd shouldn’t fight tomorrow. That was extremely disturbing. Common sense must prevail here. What in the world.”
Fellow MMA reporter Alexander K Lee said it was a “really scary weigh-in scene with Aspen Ladd this morning”, while TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter added: “Aspen Ladd has been on the scales for 3-4 minutes, looks weak and even shakes times because they can’t register her weight.
“They ask her to lift her arms. The last time she did that, she nearly fell over… That was disturbing to see.”
Ladd later took to Instagram to explain what went wrong.
“The fight is over. Again. All my fault,” she wrote. “Immediately my period started 2 days ago and made this cut absolutely miserable.
“I did my best, hit 137, the scaling situation was a mess because the last thing I wanted was to bleed for the media.
“The battle was not drawn, my opponent then decided that she would rather not go through with it, which is her right. I’m going to get beaten anyway, so let it begin.”
In a follow-up social media post, Ladd apologized to Chiasson, the UFC and her fans.
“There are times when you think you’re doing everything right and then mother nature comes into play, but the bottom line is you have to prepare for anything and everything,” Ladd wrote.
“I thought I had that.”
Ladd has been out of the Octagon for nearly two years and has canceled several fights in that time due to injuries and weight issues.
Before a 2019 clash with Germaine de Randamie, Ladd trembled on the scales and later revealed the “ruthless” toll of trying to shed enough pounds in time.
In 2018, the American lost almost 1 kg of weight for her fight with Leslie Smith, as a result of which the fight was canceled.
Her latest disturbing weigh-in sparked calls from the UFC world to move a division to featherweight (145 pounds or 65.8 kg) as bantamweight is clearly proving too heavy.
Bronsteter tweeted: “Aspen should start fighting at 145.0lbs. How many more of these scary weighing incidents can she have?”
Artist Josh Keyes wrote, “Aspen Ladd needs to make changes in her training camp, her coaches and herself. Enough is enough.”
Writer Elias Cepeda added, “Should Aspen Ladd die for her team, the UFC and athletic commissions to pay more attention to her ways into trouble and health?”