Big UFC 223 Main Event Change As Tony Ferguson Injured

It was no April Fool's Day joke this time, as interim UFC lightweight champion Tony Ferguson indeed suffered an injury that will knock him from the planned UFC 223 main event this Saturday vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov. Officials, though, found a willing opponent for the unbeaten Nurmagomedov in current featherweight champion Max Holloway.

"This is not an April Fool's, Tony is out," UFC president Dana White said. "The great thing about this sport, the stud, Max Holloway, is gonna step up and face Khabib for the official 155-pound title."



Holloway is unbeaten since a loss via decision to Conor McGregor, including wins over Jose Aldo. Nurmagomedov and Ferguson have been scheduled several times previously, with the bout not happening each time due to an injury to one of the two fighters. Ferguson was the interim lightweight champion heading into the card, which takes place from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Ferguson confirmed the injury, posting on Instagram that he "had an accident on a studio set that tore a ligament in my knee."

"My doctor and the UFC doctor both said I can't fight and one is saying I need surgery, so I will see a specialist to make the final determination on how I can heal up and get back in there," he said. "I want to apologize to all the fans, the UFC, Khabib, my teammates, my coaches, my friends and most importantly my family. I believe there is a silver lining in this nightmare of a reality."


Nurmagomedov, who has had words with Ferguson in the past over the bouts being called off, offered his thoughts on the news:

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