Thumbs Down: 5 fights that didn’t happen in 2012

It is midway through 2012, and it seems to be a bad year for injuries in the UFC. Five important fights have been cancelled or postponed this year due to injury, surgery, illness or suspension. These things are all part of the fight game and have been since day one.

The nature of the sport is brutal, but injuries are not isolated to fights. Most fighters suffer their injuries in training.  As well-rounded as a UFC fighter is expected to be, it is quite easy to “overtrain”, that is, put the body through more stress and trauma while still in the recovery stage. Unfortunately, the darker side of overtraining and recovery has lead some athlete’s into the world of performance enhancing drug’s.

Regardless of the reason, here are the five most significant fights in the UFC that have been cancelled or postponed this year.

Vitor Belfort vs. Wanderlai Silva
This Middleweight bout was scheduled to headline next weekend at UFC 147 in Brazil. Unfortunately, Belfort broke his hand in training on May 27, forcing him out of his rematch with Silva, that has been 14 years in the making. Belfort defeated Silva in 44 seconds at UFC Brazil: Ultimate Brazil, in 1998. Silva has made it clear that the fight is not cancelled, and he plans his vengeance coming later this year when their fight is rescheduled.

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Personally, I see this fight being pushed out to early 2013. Unless it can be penciled-in as a future 2012 co-main event, it is not going to happen this year. Especially not if Silva is injured in next week’s fight with Franklin.

Jose Aldo vs. Erik Koch
Aldo vs. Koch was originally slated for UFC 149. Aldo suffered a still undislosed injury, but has been reported as a sprain to a thigh muscle. Rather than take another fight, Erik Koch has stated that he will wait for Aldo to recover so he can have his shot at the Featherweight Title. Depending on the severity of Aldo’s injury, this might have a chance of happening by the end of this year, but don’t be too surprised if it happens in 2013.

Allistair Overeem vs. Junior dos Santos
Overeem was scheduled to fight UFC Heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos on May 26, 2012 at UFC 146. However, on April 4, Overeem tested positive for elevated levels of testosterone with a ratio of 14-to-1, over the allowed ratio rate of 6-to-1. Overeem claimed that the positive result came as a result of a doctor prescribed “anti-inflammatory medication that was mixed with testosterone. Unconvinced, the Nevada State Athletic Commission voted unanimously to deny Overeem’s application status for a period of 9 months. Overeem can reapply on December 28, 2012, killing any chance of this fight for this year, but we may see it in 2013.

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Dominick Cruz vs. Urijah Faber
Faber and Cruz were scheduled to face off for the third time on July 7, 2012’s UFC 148 event, but Cruz tore his ACL while training and was forced to pull out. Faber was set to fight Renan Berao in his stead. That fight has since been moved to UFC 149, to replace the aforementioned Aldo vs. Koch. Barring no future injury to Faber, fans can expect to see the end of the Cruz-Faber trilogy in 2013, after Cruz is recovered.

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Georges St. Pierre vs. Nick Diaz
Nick Diaz jumped ship from Strikeforce and vacated his title there, so he could face Georges St.Pierre to lay claim to being the best welterweight fighter in the world. The two were supposed to meet at UFC 137. Then it turned into a soap opera with all the drama but none of the action of a Viking saga.

Diaz missed a scheduled press tour in Canada and then skipped a pre-fight press conference in Las Vegas. On September 7, UFC president Dana White pulled Diaz from the card and replaced him with Carlos Condit. It was announced the next day that Diaz would fight BJ Penn, instead. Then St. Pierre was injured and Diaz vs. Penn became the main event. Diaz was expected to face St. Pierre for the UFC welterweight title at UFC 143 in January. However, he faced Carlos Condit instead. Diaz loses by decision and announces his retirement. A week or so later, there is talk of a rematch with Condit, but hopes for this were dashed when Diaz tested positive for marijuana metabolites in a post-fight drug test. The Nevada State Athletic Commission suspended Diaz for one year, retroactive to February 4, 2012; putting him out of Professional MMA until February 2013.

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So what do you think, LowKick’ers? Are we seeing more injuries lately due to lack of proper safety equipment, a result of overtraining, or is this just par for the course in our sport? Halfway through the year can we expect to see more cancellations due to injury, PED’s, or possible legal situations by the end of 2012? What fights were you denied this year that aren’t on the top 5?
Use your keyboard in the comments section to let us know!