Chris Weidman will have to throw down with middleweight champ Anderson Silva, without one of his longtime coaches in his corner, as BJJ black belt and former welterweight champ Matt Serra is reportedly unable to head out to UFC 162. Weidman’s striking coach Ray Longo has informed MMA Fighting.com that due to ongoing health issues, and the recent birth of his third child, Serra has elected to stay in Long Island.
Serra continues to recover from recent surgery he required to remove blood clots in his arm and lung, as well as a rib, due to complications arising from thoracic outlet syndrome. The serious setback prompted Serra to announce he’s almost certainly done fighting, unless the UFC is able to hold an event in New York sometime in the near future. Longo was quoted saying in the report:
“I’ll miss Matt, he kind of rounds me out as a coach. It was a hard decision for him to have to make, but sometimes family has to come first.”
As a result of Serra’s absence, Weidman has asked his father Charlie to be in his corner, who will join Longo and UFC light-heavyweight Gian Villante. It’s unlikely that the news regarding Serra will dramatically alter anyone’s prediction for the bout, or the betting lines, but there’s no doubt Serra would have brought a ton of experience and knowledge to Weidman’s corner.
Weidman will be fighting for the first time since last July when he KO’d Mark Munoz to move his record to 9-0. It will also be the first time the All-American wrestler has fought since he underwent shoulder surgery.
“Knock on wood, everything’s great,” Longo added. “The guy is healthy. He’s looking good. We’ve brought in great sparring partners and he’s ready to go. I think the cards are aligning in the right spots.”
UFC 162 will be hosted by the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and the main card will be available via pay-per-view. Stay tuned to MMA Convert.com for all your coverage.