UFC 187's blockbuster main event featuring Jon Jones and Anthony Johnson has been scrapped due to Jon's recent run-in with the law. Since the shocking car accident involving the 205 lb. kingpin on Sunday, the UFC have officially stripped Bones of his championship belt and suspended him indefinitely. Former title challenger Daniel Cormier will step in as Jon's replacement and will battle with Anthony Johnson for the official light-heavyweight strap on May 23rd.
Early betting odds reveal that the Greco-Roman specialist Cormier is listed as a favorite over Johnson. This morning's odds have Cormier as a (-150) favorite over the (+127) underdog Rumble.
Daniel Cormier immediately began engineering the UFC 187 hype machine by sniping at the Blackzilian standout on last night's broadcast of UFC Tonight. Johnson defused the situation on Twitter with a tight-lipped smile:
I'm gonna keep my mouth closed with everything I just heard and smile lol— Anthony Johnson (@Anthony_Rumble) April 29, 2015
DC's last encounter in the Octagon was also for promotional gold against Jon Jones. The proud Olympian battled toe-to-toe with Jones in the opening stanza, but his abilities deteriorated in the concluding championship rounds. The loss to Jones served as the only blemish on Cormier's otherwise immaculate MMA record and the former Strikeforce Grand Prix victor will look to deflect any criticism with a win at UFC 187.
Anthony Johnson has rumbled through the light-heavyweight rankings with a series of commanding victories. The reinvigorated 31-year-old rejoined MMA's premier promotion last year after he was cut from the UFC's main stage due to weight cutting complications. Since merging back with the UFC, the brooding 205-pounder has made mince meat of the division's contenders - steamrolling through Phil Davis, Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Alexander Gustafsson en route to his championship challenge.
While Jon Jones' recent troubles and departure from UFC 187 have cast a dark cloud over the sport's image, fans are compensated with what's sure to be a pulsating championship clash between divisional studs Daniel Cormier and Anthony Johnson.