Fiziev was supposed to fight former lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos in the co-main event of UFC 272, but the fight has now been cancelled
The co-main event of UFC 272 this Saturday between Rafael Dos Anjos and Rafael Fiziev has been cancelled.
The news was revealed live on ‘The MMA Hour’ whilst Ariel Helwani was talking with former lightweight champion Dos Anjos.
Dos Anjos and Fiziev were supposed to headline a Fight Night card on February 19, but their 155-pound clash was pushed back to UFC 272 on March 5 after Fiziev experienced Visa issues.
And Fiziev’s manager sent Helwani a text message whilst Dos Anjos was on the show informing him the fight was cancelled.
“He has Covid, he flew to the US to acclimate on Thursday after he got his work VISA,” the text message read. “He felt fine, woke up Saturday sick as a dog, fever body aches, got tested and was positive for Covid.”
No.11 ranked lightweight Fiziev later released a statement regarding his withdrawal.
“I’m devastated to announce that I’m out of the fight. I had a great camp and was ready to put on the show, I flew all the way to Vegas from Thailand just to get sick with covid, for 3 days I’m in hotel bed with fever, bones pain and cough,” he wrote.
“I called out RDA and I still want that fight when my health will allow me to compete again. Apologies to him, but saying that I was faking it is complete nonsense. Time will put everything in place.”
Dos Anjos said he suspected the fight would be cancelled after hearing rumours that Fiziev would pull out, but didn’t realise the reports were accurate until Fiziev’s manager informed Helwani.
“I hope they find somebody for me. I’m receiving some messages [right now]. I’ve put a lot of work in, it’s not easy for me to make lightweight, it’s a big investment,” he added.
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“I brought coaches in here, spending money. I haven’t fought for 16-months, it’s sad man. We’ll see, I hope somebody can step up and I can get to fight. I’m wordless right now.”
Two possible replacement for Fiziev include Islam Makhachev and Arman Tsarukyan, who both are still in Las Vegas after picking up wins last weekend.
Makhachev and Dos Anjos have signed to fight each other twice before, but the fight has never materialised.
Renato Moicano, who choked out Alex Hernandez at UFC 271 earlier this month, has also told the UFC he is willing to replace Fiziev on the card.