Dricus Du Plessis after his win over Trevin Giles at UFC 264. | Photo by Louis Grasse/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
Du Plessis and Hernandez were meeting different opponents at UFC 273, but will now face each other.
Dricus Du Plessis and Anthony Hernandez are still fighting at UFC 273, but not against their original opponents.
Du Plessis was expected to fight Chris Curtis at the upcoming pay-per-view event set to take place on April 9 at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Fla. Mike Heck of MMA Fighting reported on Tuesday that Curtis was forced to withdraw over a wrist injury. That report has since been corroborated by ‘The Action Man’, who explained what led to the injury in a video shared on social media.
“Last Thursday I was sparring, nothing crazy, everything normal,” said Curtis. “And I had that moment in the movies where a guy throws a punch and a guy throws a kick. Instead of clashing and cancelling out, his kick folded my wrist like a f—king cheap accordion. So, I go get an X-ray and I fractured my wrist. Saw a specialist yesterday morning and he’s like, ‘Oh, maybe four weeks of recovery’. I was hoping the UFC was like, ‘Hey, you can do it. See how you feel this week’ and the specialist was like, ‘No, man. You’re not fighting. I’m not clearing you. This is stupid.’ So, I’m not cleared to fight.”
With Curtis out, ‘Stillknocks’ has received a new opponent in Hernandez. ‘Fluffy’ was also expected to compete at the event, but he lost out on his fight against Albert Duraev because of a reported rib injury. Duraev was successful in his promotional debut at UFC 267, where he defeated Roman Kopylov via unanimous decision.
Du Plessis joined the UFC over a year ago following stints under KSW and EFC banners. The 28-year-old has earned finishes in both Octagon appearances, knocking out Markus Perez and Trevin Giles at UFC Fight Island 5 and UFC 264.
Hernandez rebounded from a loss to Kevin Holland with a second-round submission over Rodolfo Vieira at UFC 258 this past February. The Contender Series alum is now 2-2 in the UFC.
UFC 273 is headlined by a featherweight championship tilt between Alexander Volkanovski and Chan Sung Jung, better known as ‘The Korean Zombie.’