UFC 196 was thrown for a loop Tuesday morning, as it was revealed that lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos suffered a broken foot and will be unable to compete against Conor McGregor.
Continue for updates.
Dos Anjos Posts Image of Damaged Foot
Wednesday, Feb. 24
Rafael dos Anjos @RdosAnjosMMA
Sorry to all my real fans and @ufc,I never cancel any fight due to injury but accidents happen #Jesus #truechampion https://t.co/wrV58w9KaS2/24/2016, 2:13:36 AM
RDA's Coach Comments on Injury
Tuesday, Feb. 23
Dos Anjos "won't need surgery on his injured foot at this time, however, he can't put any pressure on it for at least three weeks," according to his coach, Rafael Cordeiro, as told to Ariel Helwani of MMAFighting.com.
Timeline of Dos Anjos Injury Revealed
Tuesday, Feb. 23
As reported by Helwani, the 31-year-old Brazilian pulled out of his scheduled main event clash with UFC featherweight champion McGregor on March 5 after picking up the foot injury last week.
McGregor Handed Replacement Opponent
Stepping up at short notice will be Nate Diaz, confirmed by the UFC. The bout will take place at welterweight to ease pressure on the weight cut.
A similar situation occurred in July prior to McGregor's UFC featherweight title fight with Jose Aldo, when the Brazilian withdrew due to injury. The Irishman instead beat Chad Mendes for the interim championship before knocking out Aldo in 13 seconds in December.
While there is no question that the Dos Anjos bout had the MMA world buzzing, McGregor's individual star power should still be enough to sell UFC 196 regardless. The potential for trash talk between he and Diaz will likely prove box-office.
McGregor still figures to get his shot at Dos Anjos eventually, assuming he defeats his new opponent at UFC 196. That fight may be even bigger due to the added wait that Dos Anjos' untimely foot injury has necessitated.
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