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Amanda Nunes out of UFC 256, Anderson fight on hold until 2021

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Fans hoping to the see the ‘Lioness’ back in the Octagon before the end of the year are going to have to wait.

UFC 250: Nunes v Spencer Photo by Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC

The UFC’s end of the year schedule has taken another hit. What was supposed to be a two title fight card, featuring Petr Yan defending his bantamweight belt against Aljamain Sterling and Amanda Nunes defending her featherweight title against Megan Anderson is now down to just one.

ESPN reports (and Megan Anderson has since verified) that Amanda Nunes has been forced to withdraw from her planned UFC 256 title defense on December 12th. No reason has been given for the withdrawal, but its expected that her fight against Anderson will be re-booked for sometime early next year.

“All I was told was she has a ‘serious medical issue’ and that they’re working on rescheduling the bout currently,” Anderson told ESPN. “Obviously, it sucks because we’ve been working so hard for this, but I hope she has a speedy recovery and the goal remains the same. Nothing has ever come easy for me. This is just another part of the journey and we’ll be ready for whatever date they set. Our time is coming one way or another.”

A former Invicta featherweight champion, Anderson’s UFC career got off to a rocky start with a unanimous decision loss to Holly Holm. A bounce back win against Cat Zingano only briefly righted the ship, before the Aussie fighting out of Glory MMA suffered a quick submission loss to Felicia Spencer. However, the 30-year-old is now on a two fight winning streak, with back-to-back victories over Zarah Fairn and Norma Dumont.

Amanda Nunes is unbeaten in her last 11 fights, stretching back to a 2014 loss to Cat Zingano. Over that time, she’s picked up wins over Ronda Rousey, Cris Cyborg, Holly Holm, and a pair of decisions over now-flyweight queen Valentina Shevchenko.

UFC 256 will likely go ahead with Yan vs. Sterling as the event’s headliner. The card is also expected to feature a heavyweight bout between former champion Junior dos Santos and rising prospect Cyril Gane, as well as a women’s strawweight bout between standout grapplers Mackenzie Dern and Virna Jandiroba. Stay tuned to Bloody Elbow for more news and notes.