For all the good luck that the UFC had in keeping fights scheduled through January, February is not starting off the same way. Saturday's UFC 234 main event between middleweight champion Robert Whittaker and top contender Kelvin Gastelum was called off just hours before the card was to start.
According to a report by ESPN, Whittaker suffered a hernia in his abdomen and could not be cleared to compete. UFC president Dana White stated that Whittaker began complaining of issues after weighing in Friday night and was taken to a local hospital. He will have surgery to resolve the issue immediately.
Anderson Silva, a former UFC middleweight champion, and rising contender Israel Adesanya have been elevated into the main event role for the night. The bout will determine the next contender to the title, likely after Whittaker defends vs. Gastelum.
UFC 234 takes place from Melbourne, Australia and the Rod Laver Arena.
BREAKING NEWS: Robert Whittaker is OUT of his middleweight title defense against Kevin Gastelum. pic.twitter.com/ZfPUEn9YQM— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) February 9, 2019