UFC 170 just lost one of the most intriguing bouts of the evening as Francisco Rivera is injured and is forced to withdraw from his bout against Raphael Assuncao. The two men were set at the main event of the prelims going into the pay per view portion of the card. The UFC will now have to scramble for a replacement on just under three week’s notice.
Raphael Assuncao tweeted about the injury to his opponent earlier:
Hi guys, so..My supposed opponent Francisco Rivera broke his hand and is outta the fight #UFC170 . Who would ya’ll like me fight against ??
— Raphael Assuncao (@RaphaAssuncao) February 3, 2014
This is as big a blow to Assuncao as it is to Rivera. Assuncao has won five straight and would have staked his claim as the #1 Bantamweight contender with a win over Rivera later this month. Unfortunately for him, the replacement opponent will likely deter his chance to fight for the title next.
Rivera is undefeated during his time in the UFC. In four fights, Rivera has KO’ed three of his opponents. One of those victories, a first round KO over Roland Delorme, was overturned to a no contest after tested positive for a banned substance post fight.
There is currently no word on who the UFC is looking to as a replacement, but we will keep you updated when any new information is available.
UPDATE: Francisco Rivera just tweeted that he sustained a hand injury, confirming that he will not be fighting at UFC 170.
Sorry guys busted my hand again .. Won't be fighting @ufc 170