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Islam Makhachev releases statement on ‘infection’ that torpedoed UFC Vegas 14 main event

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Weigh-in ahead of UFC Fight Night 163 in Moscow Photo by Valery Sharifulin\TASS via Getty Images

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is scrambling to repair the UFC Vegas 14 lightweight main event after original headliner, Islam Makhachev, was forced to withdraw from this Sat. night’s (Nov. 14, 2020) Rafael dos Anjos showdown inside APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The Brazilian, who pulled a similar move just last month, is hoping to remain on the card.

“A lot of time and effort was spent on this fight, I was in peak shape, but as soon as I started to lose weight and the immune system began to weaken, I caught an infection that would incapacitate me for at least a month in this camp,” Makhachev wrote on Instagram. “Our team had already encountered this infection more than once and many had to cancel their fights. This year was difficult for my career, a lot of fights were canceled but I promise you I will go all the way to this belt no matter what it takes.”

Dos Anjos has called for Bellator import Michael Chandler to take his place.

Makhachev (18-1) is currently ranked No. 12 at 155 pounds and was hoping to break into the Top 10 with a commanding performance against the battle-tested Dos Anjos (29-13), who once held gold at 155 pounds.

He may get his chance later this year if UFC is unable to secure a replacement.