Dan Miller steps in to replace Yoshihiro Akiyama, faces Nate Marquardt at UFC 128Posted on March 14, 2011, 12:55 AM by Joey Santosus
UFC Middleweight Yoshihiro Akiyama, who was set to face Nate Marquardt at UFC 128, has been forced to withdraw from the bout due to the tragic earthquake in his home country of Japan.
Though UFC President Dana White originally announced that Akiyama and his family were safe, and he would still appear on the New Jersey card, the change was confirmed just a short time later.
Officials have now confirmed that Dan Miller, who was originally scheduled to meet Nick Catone in a preliminary bout, will step in for Akiyama against Marquardt.
Miller (13-4) was last seen in action at UFC 124, winning a closely contended split decision against veteran Joe Doerksen. The victory was his second in a row after suffering a dreaded three-fight losing streak that threatened his future with the promotion. The former IFL Champion debuted with a three fight winning streak, including wins over Rob Kimmons, Matt Horwich, and Jake Rosholt before dropping his next three against Chael Sonnen, Demian Maia, and Michael Bisping. Miller will look to continue building momentum as he steps in on short notice for the second time since October.
Marquardt (30-10-2), meanwhile, will look to bounce back from a November loss to Yushin Okami that cost him a second shot at the division title. Prior to the defeat, Marquardt had put together a respectable 5-2 mark since his failed attempt to dethrone Anderson Silva back in 2007, losing only to Thales Leites and Chael Sonnen. A victory here will be crucial as the Jackson's MMA product looks to once again climb back to the top of the division.
UFC 128 will take place this Saturday from the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. The stacked card will be headlined by a Light Heavyweight title clash between division Champion Mauricio "Shogun" Rua and challenger Jon "Bones" Jones, while top Bantamweight contenders Urijah Faber and Eddie Wineland will go head to head in the co-main event.