Mike Davis won’t get to finally face Giga Chikadze after all.
Davis (8-2) has suffered complications with his weight cut so has been removed from Saturday’s fight card in Florida. However, the promotion have managed to find a last-minute replacement for Chikadze (9-2), who will now face Titan FC bantamweight champion, Irwin Rivera, in a featherweight bout. The news was announced by the UFC in a statement released on Friday afternoon which can be seen below.
Due to complications with his weight cut unrelated to COVID-19, Mike Davis has been removed from his Saturday bout with Giga Chikadze at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville.
Stepping in for Davis in the featherweight bout will be UFC newcomer Irwin Rivera, pending medical clearance including a COVID-19 test. As a result, the commission has agreed to weigh in Rivera separately and he will not participate in today’s official weigh-ins and faceoffs.
Chikadze has picked up two split decision victories in the organization over Brandon Davis and Jamall Emmers and is looking to make it five wins straight this weekend. The Kings MMA product competed on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series and has a background in kickboxing. Chikadze has been booked to face Mike Davis three times according to the Georgian, but none of those bouts ever materialized.
Rivera (9-4) is making the move to the UFC off the back of a trio of wins due to strikes in Titan FC. He captured the promotion’s bantamweight title in June of last year when he defeated Matt Wagy and defended it six months later against Danny Sabatello. The 31-year-old is stepping up to the featherweight division on Saturday night due to taking the bout on short notice.
With this change, the UFC Jacksonville lineup is as follows:-
Main Card (ESPN/BT Sport 1)
Heavyweight - Alistair Overeem v Walt Harris
Women’s Strawweight - Claudia Gadelha v Angela Hill
Featherweight - Dan Ige v Edson Barboza
Middleweight - Eryk Anders v Krzysztof Jotko
Featherweight - Song Yadong v Marlon Vera
Preliminary Card (ESPN/ESPN+/BT Sport 1/UFC Fight Pass)
Welterweight - Matt Brown v Miguel Baeza
Middleweight - Anthony Hernandez v Kevin Holland
Featherweight - Giga Chikadze v Irwin Rivera
Women’s Flyweight - Cortney Casey v Mara Romero Borella
Featherweight - Darren Elkins v Nate Landwehr
Heavyweight - Rodrigo Nascimento v Don’Tale Mayes