James Irvin (14-5) has been forced to withdraw from his UFC 102 middleweight debut against Wilson Gouveia on August 29 following a massive knee injury suffered in training that will likely require surgery according to radio host Carmichael Dave.
This is the second time this year Irvin has been bounced from an event due to injury. He was set to return from a nine-month drug suspension at UFC 98 against Drew McFedries back on May 23 before hurting his knee and pulling out of the fight.
"The Massacre" went on to TKO Irvin's replacement, Xavier Foupas-Pokam, just 37 seconds into the first round.
Irvin hasn't competed since a first round technical knockout loss to Anderson Silva at UFC Fight Night 14 more than one year ago. "The Sandman" was nursing a broken foot just weeks before accepting the bout and subsequently tested positive for Methadone and Oxymorphone after the fight.
The California native claims he used the banned substances to mask the pain associated with the injury.
Before the loss to Silva, Irvin experienced an injury-riddled and bizarre 2007 fight campaign, during which he blew out his knee in a loss to Thiago Silva and was knocked silly courtesy of an errant Luis Arthur Cane knee that resulted in a disqualification win.
He rebounded by knocking out Houston Alexander in record time at last year's UFC Fight Night 13.
The momentum was unfortunately cut short once again in 2008 -- and as of now it looks like he won't have the chance to get it going again in 2009.