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UFC 142 Championship Bout Official, Johnson Puts Belfort Fight In Jeopardy

The UFC 142: Aldo vs. Mendes weigh-ins just went down in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with both of the headlining fighters hitting the mark to greenlight their championship battle.

His unwelcome presence in enemy territory made clear by a hostile crowd, Chad Mendes kept his cool and expressed his excitement at having the chance to finally prove to everyone that he’s world class.

“This is a great opportunity for me to come in here and show the world who I am,” he said. “I’m gonna come in here and face a great champion in José Aldo and I’m excited to show what I’ve got.”

The crowd predictably erupting at his presence on the mic, Aldo pledged to be in top form for his rambunctiously supportive countrymen and women.

“This is my home country and I’m gonna do my best tomorrow night for everyone here,” said the champ.

Things didn’t go as professionally in the co-main event, as debuting middleweight Anthony Johnson missed the 185 target by twelve pounds, weighing in at 197lbs. despite moving up a division. UFC president Dana White announced Johnson’s failure to make weight shortly before today’s weigh-ins on Fuel TV with Jon Anik, denouncing Rumble as unprofessional and revealing the stipulation that Johnson must weigh in again tomorrow and not be above 205lbs.

“The stipulation is, Vitor does not want him to weigh more than 205 pounds by tomorrow at like 2 o’clock in the afternoon. So we’ll see how this thing plays out. He’ll weigh in today and have to weigh in tomorrow,” said White. “As a fighter, you are a professional. You are contracted to come in at a certain weight. This is not the first time this has happened with Johnson. He moved up to 185 pounds so this wouldn’t happen to him at 170 pounds, and here we are in the same position again. [Belfort] came in like a professional on weight, and Anthony Johnson comes in as a total unprofessional, way overweight.”

UFC 142 goes down tomorrow at the HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Don’t forget to check back on FightLine for our live, ongoing coverage of the event.