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Islam Makhachev out of Rafael Dos Anjos fight; RDA wants Michael Chandler as replacement

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For the second time, the fight between Islam Makhachev and Rafael dos Anjos is cancelled, leaving UFC Vegas 14 with an uncertain headliner.

UFC Fight Night: Dos Anjos v Chiesa Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

This weekend’s upcoming UFC Vegas 14 fight card is suddenly without a headliner. For the second straight time, the pairing between Rafael dos Anjos and Islam Makhachev has been called off.

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto first broke the news on Sunday. MMA Fighting later confirmed the report, citing Makhachev is out due to undisclosed reasons.

Makhachev vs. Dos Anjos was originally planned to be part of UFC 254. That ended up falling through after the latter tested positive for COVID-19.

Upon hearing the news, TUF 27 alum Luis Peña expressed willingness to step in on a week’s notice and take on the biggest fight of his career.

The former lightweight champion, however, has another name in mind.

Chandler signed with the UFC in September and was immediately slated as the backup fighter for either Khabib Nurmagomedov or Justin Gaethje at UFC 254. The three-time Bellator champion has yet to finalize his debut, but if it were up to him, a fight with either Gaethje or Tony Ferguson would be the ideal way to kick off his UFC run.

UFC Vegas 14 happens on Saturday, November 14, at the APEX Facility.