In a shock development ahead of UFC 216 tonight, the heavyweight clash of Fabricio Werdum and Derrick Lewis has been cancelled.
With just hours to go until the scheduled showdown between the pair on the main card, the eagerly anticipated bout has been pulled due to a back injury sustained by Lewis.
Top MMA journalist and ever the reliable source Ariel Helwani broke the news moments ago.
Confirmed that tonight's Derrick Lewis vs. Fabricio Werdum fight has been canceled. Lewis' back continues to give him issues. Couldn't move this AM and in lots of pain. Tried to fight through it this week. UFC 216 proceeds with 11 fights now.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) October 7, 2017
With the bout being cancelled on such short notice, there will obviously be no replacement to step in to challenge Werdum in place of Lewis.
This will come as disappointing news to MMA fans as this heavyweight showdown was set to be a barnstormer of a contest. Both fighters knew that a win would put them in pole position for a crack at champion Stipe Miocic next.
The card will go ahead with Demetrius ‘Mighty Mouse’ Johnson taking on Ray Borg in an attempt to break the record for number of consecutive UFC title defences. That record is currently held by Anderson Silva.
The main event sees Tony ‘El Cucuy’ Ferguson go head-to-head with Kevin Lee for the UFC interim lightweight championship and perhaps, more significantly, in a position to be a strong contender as Conor McGregor’s next opponent.