The fourth time ended up not being the charm as the biggest fight so far this year in UFC — Khabib Nurmagomedov vs. Tony Ferguson for the interim lightweight title — is now off for this coming Saturday night at UFC 223 in Brooklyn, NY.
According to MMA Fighting’s Ariel Helwani, Nurmagomedov will instead be facing featherweight champion Max Holloway in the main event for the interim lightweight title or the “real” title if current champion Conor McGregor is stripped.
No, this is not an April Fool’s joke.
UFC president Dana White told ESPN that Ferguson suffered a torn LCL and needs surgery. The fight had been scheduled three times before, but were scrapped due to injuries or a bad weight cut in the case of Nurmagomedov.
The idea from UFC will be to try and set the winner of Holloway-Nurmagomedov up with a match against McGregor. The latter has been on the sidelines since November 2016, save for his boxing match against Floyd Mayweather. McGregor and Holloway have battled before with McGregor earning a decision victory in August 2013 in a fight where he tore up his knee.
We’ll have more about this on the next edition of Wrestling Observer Radio.