A men’s featherweight fight that could’ve seen the winner get a title shot is now off.
Following a report from Milenio, UFC president Dana White confirmed that an August 29th main event between Yair Rodriguez and Zabit Magomedsharipov has been scrapped following an ankle injury to Rodriguez. The promotion is now seeking a replacement for Yair, and one option could be Calvin Kattar.
ESPN’s Ariel Helwani says that Kattar has agreed to fight on short notice, although he later clarified that the fight hasn’t actually been offered to him yet. Kattar fought Zabit to a decision loss last November, but it was a three-rounder due to the late notice bump from co-main to main event. He’s coming off a win over Dan Ige last month, but is otherwise recovering from a broken nose.
Rodriguez (13-2, 1 NC) won his rematch over Jeremy Stephens by unanimous decision after the first encounter ended in a rapid-fire eye poke no contest. The talented Mexican sensation is in prime title contention in large part because of his dramatic KO win over Chan Sung Jung in the literal final second of a fight he was trailing on the scorecards.
Magomedsharipov (18-1) is on a 14-fight winning streak, with six of those victories coming under the UFC banner. The native of Dagestan has the aforementioned win over Kattar, as well as a decision over Stephens. One concern with Zabit has been his gas tank, as he’s yet to go five rounds in his career and has had issues fading late in bouts. That aside, this was a matchup between two dynamic, exciting talents with title implications and now it’s on the shelf.
We’ll see if Kattar does the get the call to take on Zabit, or if the UFC looks elsewhere for August 29th.