The biggest featherweight fight in Ultimate Fighting Championship history will have to wait. After plenty of speculation about whether current champion Jose Aldo would be able to fight on July 11 at UFC 189, it has been determined that his rib injury is too severe.
Instead, his original opponent, Conor McGregor, will now face off against No. 1 contender Chad Mendes for the promotion’s interim title.
UFC president Dana White confirmed the news on ESPN’s SportsCenter Tuesday night.
Jose Aldo is officially out of UFC 189, per Dana White on ESPN. Chad Mendes meets Conor McGregor for the interim belt.
— Mike Bohn (@MikeBohnMMA) July 1, 2015
It is an unfortunate development, but that is why the UFC had a backup plan in place.
When news of the Aldo injury first broke, the UFC approached Chad Mendes to ensure he would be ready to fight McGregor incase Aldo couldn’t go. Now, the two men will battle to become the first featherweight champion in UFC history not named Jose Aldo.
UFC 189 takes place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas with another title fight, Robbie Lawler vs. Rory MacDonald for the welterweight strap, also on the pay-per-view.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports