Despite all the speculation to the contrary, Ray Borg insists that his withdrawal from a flyweight championship bout against Demetrious Johnson at UFC 215 was not weight-cut related.
“You can’t put off the inevitable,” Borg said during a media call to promote UFC 216. “Everyone at my camp was sick, my wife was sick. I was just banking on not catching it, but it happened. There’s not a whole lot you can do.”
The headlining bout was canceled just two days before the Sept. 9 event, forcing the promotion to elevate the women’s bantamweight title clash between Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko to the main event. Borg did not get into specifics regarding the illness, but he continued to reiterate that it had nothing to do with cutting weight.
“The diagnosis? I don’t know, I’m not a doctor,” Borg said. “[The UFC doctor] told me that I had a flu virus and that was it. I was throwing up – I had the shakes, I had the shivers – and it wasn’t like no weight-cutting type sickness. I just got the flu.”
After the cancellation, Borg announced that he would be parting ways with Perfecting Athletes and nutritionist Michelle Ingels. After the Jackson-Wink MMA product was rebooked against Johnson at UFC 216, Borg elected not to work with a nutritionist leading up to the bout. That, he says, has been the norm for most of his professional career.
“I tried to add a nutritionist to help me out because I was getting a little bit older, the weight was getting a little bit tougher to cut. I just went back to doing the same s--t that got me to the show,” Borg said. “I’m not working with anybody this time around just because. One thing people don’t understand is it wasn’t a weight issue. I was just legitimately sick. If it was a weight issue, then when Dana had the doctors come down to check me out they would have told him it was a weight issue. But they did not clear me to fight because I was actually sick. In this sense, there isn’t much of a point for a nutritionist.
“Because I didn’t come home and blow up 10 pounds and eat burgers all day. I came home, rested and made sure I was eating the right foods so I was feeling better. My weight was never a problem to begin with,” he continued. “It’s not gonna be an issue at all in future fights. I never had a nutritionist leading up to the UFC and getting into the UFC.”
When pressed, Borg declined to reveal the specific reasoning behind his decision to part ways with Perfecting Athletes.
“I’ll say this the ladies at Perfecting Athletes are awesome ladies. They truly know what they’re doing. They made my weight cut so easy that I didn’t even believe them…they did on amazing job,” he said.
“The reason for parting ways with Perfecting Athletes went a lot more in depth than what people know and it’s something that I don’t really want to discuss. And it’s something you’re not going to get me to discuss. It has nothing to do with the weight issue. It was different. I really don’t wish to touch base on it, but maybe in the future you can pull it out of me.”