Well, so much for that planned super-fight. It is being reported by multiple news outlets, that UFC lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos has a broken foot and will be unable to defend his title in the main event of UFC 196.
MMAfighting.com‘s Ariel Helwani breaks down the details of the story:
According to multiple sources, dos Anjos suffered a broken foot late last week, forcing him to pull out of the lightweight title fight against McGregor. The UFC is currently working on finding a replacement to fight McGregor on less than two weeks’ notice, however, nothing has been finalized at this time.
The main event looked to pit the champions of two divisions against each other in a rare super-fight. Dos Anjos, the 155 pound champ, vs. Conor McGregor, the featherweight champion–the ratings and pay-per-view buy mega star. McGregor is familiar with last minute replacements in title fights. As Chad Mendes was a last minute replacement for his originally scheduled bout against, former champ, Jose Aldo at UFC 189.
Back then an interim-strap was on the line, so the risk/reward for McGregor was worth it to attain his first world title. If the UFC would be willing to do that again for their superstar pugilist, so he can become their first ever two-division champion, is anyone’s guess. And if their is no title on the line, would “The Notorious” be willing to risk his name recognition, against a brand new opponent, with little to gain other than a pay day?
With 12 days before the event, the UFC will be hard pressed to find an adequate replacement for such a highly anticipated card. For fans hoping to see former lightweight champ, and 145 pound contender, Frankie Edgar get the nod, think again.
Via Ariel Helwani’s twitter account:
If you’re clamoring for Edgar, he’s unavailable, I’m told. Dealing w/ an injury. There aren’t a ton of options. You can probably guess em.
If no replacement is found, the scheduled title fight between women’s featherweight champion Holly Holm and Miesha Tate is likely to slot in as the new main event.
We will continue to update this developing story as more information comes in.
UFC has announced its replacement for the injured Rafael Dos Anjos–Nate Diaz. The one time 155 pound contender is taking the fight on 12 days notice. Because of this, company President Dana White also stated the bout will take place at the 170 pound welterweight limit.
Many fans have clamored for this fight once McGregor’s intentions of a move up in division were made. Now they will get it, and it should be a wild one.