Yoel Romero defeated former UFC Middleweight Champion Luke Rockhold by third round knockout in the main event of UFC 221.
Romero would’ve become the interim middleweight champion if he made weight for the fight, but UFC executive David Shaw says weight issues won’t affect a potential future title shot against Robert Whittaker.
“The weight situation, I don’t think that’s going to play into it (when it comes to a title shot),” Shaw said after the event. “I think we’ve got a few factors that are going to allow us for some time, and first and foremost, it’s that Rob can’t really fight for a few months, so there’s a bit of time to figure out what happens in the middleweight division.”
The Cuban fighter had previously fought for the UFC Interim Middleweight Title, losing to Whittaker at UFC 213.
Shaw does admit that the weight issues did put a little bit of a damper on the UFC 221 festivities.
“For us, it’s never good when fighters miss weight, so I think it sort of takes a bit away from the main event,” said Shaw. “I’m glad that the main event fight continued, obviously. I thought the fight itself was pretty dynamic. The first round, they kind of sussed each other out, and Romero was pretty emphatic. I mean, that was a pretty decisive win.”
Whittaker is currently on the shelf with a variety of injuries and a time frame for a return to action has yet to be determined.