UFC 248 scheduled to take place on March 7th in Las Vegas continues to raise more eyebrows as the event suffered another setback.
Robert Whittaker announced that he has pulled out of a highly anticipated middleweight bout against Jared Cannonier which was initially reported by ESPN. There has not been a definite reason for Whittaker’s withdrawal but could be due to personal issues.
Whittaker had an eventful 2019. He was scheduled to defend his title at UFC 234 against Kevin Gastelum but was forced to pull out due to a hernia injury the night before the fight. The injury required emergency surgery and kept Whittaker on the sideline for months.
Following Israel Adesanya’s victory over Kevin Gastelum at UFC 242 for the middleweight interim title, Whittaker and Adesanya fought at UFC 243 in Melbourne, Australia. The event set a UFC attendance record . Adesanya won via 2nd round TKO to become the undisputed UFC champion.
Jarrod Cannonier has been on one of the hottest streaks in the UFC middleweight division. Since dropping from the light heavyweight division he is 3-0. 2019 included victories over Anderson Silva and Jack Hermansson. The UFC has not announced a replacement opponent for Cannonier but Darren Till is a strong contender.
UFC 248 still does not have the main event. In a recent interview, Israel Adesanya remains adamant that a title fight with Yoel Romero will headline the event. Zhang Weili vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk title fight is scheduled as the co-main event.