A pivotal headliner in the UFC‘s middleweight division is off. ESPN’s Ariel Helwani was the first to report that the upcoming headliner between Darren Till (18-3-1) and Marvin Vettori (16-4-1) is off.
Darren Till suffered an injury to his collarbone and had to pull out of the fight on April 10th. This is the second straight headlining matchup that Till has had to pull out of.
Marvin Vettori took to Twitter and said that he is willing to fight anyone who’s willing to step in on two weeks notice. At this time, the UFC is currently exploring replacement options to keep Vettori in the headliner.
This Fight Night was set to be the second UFC Fight Night on ABC. The matchup was pivotal given the fluid middleweight division. The winner could have produced the next title challenger for Israel Adesanya.
The UFC had huge middleweight matchups booked for April and two headliners have been called off. On April 17th, Robert Whittaker and Paulo Costa were set to fight in a title eliminator.
However, Costa had to pull out of the fight. Now, that event was saved as Kelvin Gastelum stepped up to take on Whittaker on short notice. Now, the UFC has to try and find a new opponent for The Italian Dream.
So what options are available to the UFC? I doubt this is a possibility, but the promotion could always give Derek Brunson (22-7) a call. Brunson just won a headliner against Kevin Holland (22-6) 10 days ago, but that was his fourth win in a row.
If he’s willing to do a Donald Cerrone-like turnaround, this is the matchup that makes the most sense from a rankings perspective. Holland has also said he would step in on Twitter. The only other option could be either Chris Weidman (15-5) or Uriah Hall (16-9).
Those two are scheduled to fight at UFC 261 so one of them could choose to step up and take the main event spot. This situation is very fluid and it’s one to keep your eyes on over the next few hours.