Shortly after we saw the blockbuster Vitor Belfort vs. Chris Weidman bout materialize following “The Phenom’s” licensing by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC), another awaited title fight has unfortunately fallen apart.
No. 1-ranked UFC light heavyweight Alexander “The Mauler” Gustafsson has been unfortunately forced out of his UFC 178 title rematch with longtime champion and rival Jon “Bones” Jones.
Gustafsson tore his meniscus in training and will be forced to undergo surgery. He should receive a title shot when he is medically cleared to return, but we all know things change rapidly in the UFC.
It’s an unfortunate blow for Gustafsson, who spent a ton of time campaigning to get his rematch with Jones before finally securing it only to see the bout blow up in his face.
Daniel Cormier has been booked to step in for “The Mauler,” culminating his long-standing beef with “Bones” much sooner than expected. The Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix champion has made it public that he cut down to 205 pounds earlier this year in an effort to eventually face “Bones” for the title.
After starching late replacement Patrick Cummins in the co-main event of February’s UFC 170, Cormier absolutely destroyed former Pride and Strikeforce champion in the co-main event of UFC 173 on May 24.
The grinding AKA product was set to have surgery for a torn LCL and damaged ACL in his right knee, but unlike Gustafsson, he can apprently put the surgery aside until after his coveted title shot has come and gone.
Assuming the role of the world’s No. 1-ranked pound-for-pound fighter, the dominant Jones was last seen picking apart power-hitting contender Glover Teixeira in the main event of April 27’s UFC 172 from Baltimore, Maryland. He’ll now see if he can do the same to Cormier, but most are picking “DC” as the clearest threat to Jones’ record-setting reign of title defenses.
Jones actually expressed his desire to face Cormier rather than rematch Gustafsson, so he got what he originally wanted in a roundabout way.
Something’s got to give, because Cormier is undefeated and Jones only has one very controversial disqualification loss on his record.
Here’s a full rundown of the revised UFC 178 card:
- Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier
- Dominick Cruz vs. Takeya Mizugaki
- Conor McGregor vs. Dustin Poirier
- Tim Kennedy vs. Yoel Romero
- Cat Zingano vs. Amanda Nunes
- John Howard vs. Brian Ebersole
- Patrick Cote vs. Stephen Thompson
Stay tuned to LowKick MMA for more updates on the unfolding situation.