The main event of the final UFC card this year, on December 19, Leon Edwards vs. Khamzat Chimaev has been cancelled, after sources revealed today that Edwards has tested positive for Covid-19. UFC matchmakers are looking to rebook the bout for early 2021.
According to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, Edward’s case is particularly bad one, so bad in fact that he has lost 12 pounds in under a week. Rumours had circulated on Monday that the fight was off, due to Chimaev supposedly testing positive himself. That was untrue.
Edwards (18-3) does not seem to be able to catch a break this year. The Birmingham fighter was booked against former Welterweight Champion Tyron Woodley at UFC London in March – this was the first event to be cancelled due to the pandemic. Since then, he has been the only top-five Welterweight, other than Stephen Thompson, not to compete in 2020, as lockdown rules in the UK prevented him from fighting sooner this year.
Chimaev (9-0), who has had a wildly contrasting year to Edwards, is coming off three quick succession wins in the UFC in the second half of 2020. This would have been the 26-year-old’s first ranked opponent in the promotion.
This is the second UFC main event that has been cancelled due to Covid-19 in less than a week. It rounds off what has been a hard year, especially for UFC Matchmakers. According to sources, Geoff Neal vs. Stephen Thompson could be bumped up to the main event, as could Jose Aldo vs. Marlon ‘Chito’ Vera.
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