Recent UFC light heavyweight title challenger, Thiago ‘Marreta’ Santos has been forced to withdraw from his UFC ‘Fight Island’ rescheduled matchup with fellow one-time championship chaser, Glover Teixeira, after testing positive for COVID-19.
This marks the second occasion the all-Brazilian affair has fallen to the wayside, following a shelved matchup at UFC Fight Night Vegas 10 last weekend – where Teixeira was ruled out of the headlining bout after he himself had returned a positive test result for the novel coronavirus. News of Santos’ removal and positive test was first penned by Combate reporter, Marcelo Barone.
In what would’ve marked his first Octagon walk since his close UFC 239 title challenge loss to recent vacating champion, Jon Jones – Muay Thai practitioner, Santos has recently recovered from a number of critical leg injuries sustained in the five-round affair. The defeat to Jackson-Wink MMA mainstay, Jones marked Santos’ first blemish since his move to the division in the final quarter of 2018.
Himself left opponent-less this time around, Minas Gerais veteran, Teixeira was attempting to earn his second title opportunity under the UFC’s banner, seemingly in a purple patch of form. Getting his hand raised in all four of his last contests, Teixeira added another former title hopeful to his gleaming winning résumé earlier this year – with an eventual fifth-round knockout of Anthony ‘Lionheart’ Smith.
The five-round drubbing followed other victories over former Fights Night Global gold holder, Nikita Krylov – before submission successes opposite Moldovan striker, Ion ‘The Hulk’ Cuţelaba, and Karl Roberson. Teixeira first challenged for 205-pound spoils against the aforenoted, Jones at UFC 172 in April of 2014 – dropping a unanimous decision defeat.
With the October 3rd. event set to be headlined by a potential title eliminator at bantamweight between former division queen, Holly Holm, and surging challenger, Irene Aldana – it is currently unknown if the organization will attempt to rebook Santos vs. Teixeira once again or find a new opponent for the latter.