The UFC 267 card has taken another hit.
The scheduled bout between Rafael dos Anjos and Islam Makhachev has been cancelled due to an injury suffered by dos Anjos. The news was first reported by MMAJunkie.com after a back and forth between dos Anjos and Makhachev on Twitter.
Do you really think I would fake a surgery? Coming out of another terrible injury. Unlike you I have a family that depends on me and I don’t have another man paying my bills. https://t.co/PDvQ2rhZsq
— Rafael dos Anjos (@RdosAnjosMMA) September 26, 2021
Dos Anjos admitted to having surgery on his knee a few weeks ago but had planned to go through with the fight. He spoke to Sherdog about his injury and how he was recovering from it.
“I’m already walking without crutches, in 10 days I need to be able to sparring,” dos Anjos said. “I’m a fighter; I always want to fight. We already told the UFC what happened. By the way, the UFC was great at paying for all my surgery expenses. But of course, I can’t decide alone. I have to hear from my trainer, my doctor and physiotherapist. We must take the final decision in one week.”
This is the third time this fight has been scheduled. The first was back in October of last year but dos Anjos was forced out due to COVID-19, The bout was rescheduled for November but then an illness kept Makhachev out. In the time that has passed, dos Anjos won a fight against Paul Felder, and Makhachev beat Drew Dober and Thiago Moisés both with submissions.
Although they had both fought different opponents, the matchup between these two continued to be interesting to both parties. Now with the most recent cancellation, the UFC should move on with different options. Makhachev should be able to remain on the card in Abu Dhabi and receive a new opponent. Like Petr Yan in the co-main event who lost his opponent as well, the UFC should try to keep the card as intact as possible. After Makhachev’s last win, there were plenty of people calling his name, so finding a replacement last minute shouldn’t be a problem.