Rising UFC lightweight contender Rafael Fiziev won’t be competing this weekend at UFC 272.
Fiziev has been forced to withdraw from his bout against former champion Rafael dos Anjos, which was scheduled as the co-main event Saturday night at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Fiziev tested positive for COVID-19 and is experiencing symptoms.
Fiziev (11-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) confirmed he was out on Twitter after Ariel Helwani broke the news Monday.
“I’m devastated to announce that I’m out of the fight,” Fiziev wrote. “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.
“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”
The UFC is currently trying to keep dos Anjos (31-13 MMA, 19-11 UFC) on the card and in search of a short-notice replacement.
Renato Moicano’s management informed MMA Junkie’s Nolan King that the Brazilian is interested in stepping in on short notice and has let the UFC know about his interest. Moicano last fought Feb. 12 at UFC 271, submitting Alexander Hernandez in the second round.
Dos Anjos indicated during his appearance on “The MMA Hour” that he’s willing to fight somebody on short notice.
“I’m always ready to fight anybody. Paul Felder was a last-minute replacement for Islam on fight wee, as well,” dos Anjos said. “… I’m a fighter. I know I have to be careful with the fights that I take, that I pick right now because at this stage of my career a loss is not going to be good right now. It’s my third title run, but I’m a fighter, and I’m always ready for anybody.”
Dos Anjos hasn’t competed since beating Felder, who took the fight on five days’ notice, in November 2020.
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Below is the updated line up for UFC 272:
Colby Covington vs. Jorge Masvidal
Rafael dos Anjos vs. opponent TBA
Edson Barboza vs. Bryce Mitchell
Kevin Holland vs. Alex Oliveira
Greg Hardy vs. Serghei Spivac
Jamie Mullarkey vs. Jalin Turner
Marina Rodriguez vs. Yan Xiaonan
Nicolae Negumereanu vs. Kennedy Nzechukwu
Mariya Agapova vs. Maryna Moroz
Brian Kelleher vs. Umar Nurmagomedov
Tim Elliott vs. Tagir Ulanbekov
Ludovit Klein vs. Devonte Smith
Dustin Jacoby vs. Michal Oleksiejczuk