The MMA community is still in shock about the cancellation of UFC 223’s scheduled main event lightweight title fight between Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov. Fallout from the shocking news poured in on Monday, and here are some final tidbits about the main event switch in today’s MMA odds and ends.
Tony Ferguson Explains How He Got Injured
Tony Ferguson revealed in an interview on The MMA Hour at MMAFighting.com how he got injured in the first place. Ferguson told host Ariel Helwani that he was completing a UFC-mandated media session last Thursday when he tripped on a production cable in a dark room and tripped. Ferguson felt immediately that he may be injured, but ultimately chose to continue to try and push through the injury. When he was in more pain on Saturday he told the UFC what happened and got an MRI, which confirmed he injured his LCL. Now he’s mulling his options of whether or not he will have surgergy. Regardless, it looks like Ferguson is going to be on the shelf for a while, and if he doesn’t come back fully healthy from this injury it’s possible his days as an elite mixed martial artist are over.
Dana White Says Ferguson/Nurmagomedov Won’t Be Booked Again
UFC president Dana White told Brett Okamoto of ESPN.com that the UFC will not book a fifth matchup between Ferguson and Nurmagomedov. Previously, both Nurmagomedov and Ferguson had pulled out of previous scheduled fights with injuries, plus Nurmagomedov failed to weigh in during the third attempt to book the fight. Now Ferguson has pulled out with another injury which it makes it four cancellations of the bout. And according to White, there won’t be a fifth. However, if Ferguson returns to the Octagon and continues his winning ways, he may eventually get another crack at Nurmagomedov. It’s still ultra disappointing that this fight isn’t happening this weekend, and the fact it may never happen according to White is even more disappointing, though you can’t fault the UFC for not wanting to book this cursed bout again.
Brian Ortega Says UFC Offered Him Nurmagomedov
Top featherweight contender Brian Ortega revealed on his Twitter that the UFC called him and asked him to step in on short notice and up a weight class to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov. According to Ortega, he accepted the bout but the UFC had already found Holloway to replace Ferguson at that point. Still, this news shows that Ortega was willing to step up and save the show, not to mention continue to challenge himself as a mixed martial artist.