We covered the reduction of the huge upcoming heavyweight co-main event for UFC Fight Night 76 yesterday with the statement that Stipe Miocic has been made to back out of his fight from Ben Rothwell, however there is more to the story and some other struggle announcements/injuries to discuss today. UFC is apparently searching for a brief notice replacement for Miocic to step in and combat Rothwell in Dublin, and a couple of notable names set their names to the ring. The first was Matt Mitrione, who had been fighting very nicely against Rothwell earlier this year before diving right into a takedown effort that got him filed instantly via guillotine choke. Mitrione would not likely be the primary option due to his quick defeat, but he’s a case considering his desire for salvation. The largest problem with Mitrione right now is the simple fact he’s currently booked to battle Travis Browne in January. Another and most intriguing replacement opportunity came out of left field as world class kickboxer Tyrone Spong requested an opportunity to fight Rothwell. Spong, who currently trains together with the Blackzilians in Boco Ratan, has made a name for himself as perhaps the very best light heavyweight striker in the world with a kickboxing listing of 74-7-1 with one no contest. His combined martial arts credentials, however, are much more sparse. Spong is currently 2-0 in MMA, with just two victories under the World Series of penalizing banner, although he hasn’t fought an MMA bout in over two decades and has not competed professionally in any combat sport since suffering a leg injury against Gokhan Saki 18 months ago. The biggest problem here will be cash, as I’m convinced signing Spong to some UFC bargain on short notice would not come cheap. In other accident replacement news… Justin Lawrence vs Emmanuel Sanchez — Bellator 145 Regrettably, an accident to former two-time Bellator winner Pat Curran has forced him out of his struggle against Justin Lawrence just over three weeks before his departure was set to happen. In measures Emmanuel Sanchez, a 25-year old fighter out of the Roufusport Gym in Milwaukee using an 11-2 record all around. Sanchez is now 3-1 beneath the Bellator banner, losing a decision to Curran already and most recently picked up a split decision victory over Henry Corrales two and a half weeks ago at Bellator 143. This will certainly not be an easy for fight for Sanchez, particularly on short notice and with such a fast turnaround. I would expect Lawrence for a moderate to heavy favorite by the time that the chances are drawn up.
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