At UFC 292, Marlon “Chito” Vera (22-8-1) was supposed to have a fight against former two-division champion Henry Cejudo on the anniversary of Cejudo’s Olympic Gold Medal win. However, we learned recently that Cejudo had to pull out of the fight with a tear in his shoulder.
The UFC quickly pivoted and began working on replacements for Vera. Today, we learned who they settled on to replace Cejudo. Vera’s management team was the first to tweet the news that Vera would still be competing on August 19th and he’ll be taking on top ten contender Pedro Munhoz (20-7).
Munhoz had a big bounce back win at UFC Kansas City in April when he defeated Chris Gutierrez. It was a much needed win as Munhoz had gone just 1-4, 1 NC in the six fights prior to that win. However, he looked very good in that win and looked like he still belonged in the bantamweight top ten.
While this is a step back for the 6th ranked Vera in fighting Munhoz, he’s still getting a top-ten opponent with Munhoz currently coming in at 10th in the rankings. It’s still a very solid fight for Chito and one that he needs to win to get back on track.
Vera came into 2023 having won four straight including wins over Frankie Edgar, Rob Font, and Dominick Cruz. Two of those were brutal knockout wins. He was perhaps only a win away from a title shot when he took on Cory Sandhagen back in March in San Antonio.
Vera could never quite get going in the matchup and Sandhagen picked him apart throughout the night as a result. While the official cards stated split decision, trust me, it was a lopsided win for Sandhagen. Now, Chito will look to regain his momentum at UFC 292 against a tough Pedro Munhoz.