Current Bellator MMA bantamweight champion Sergio Pettis was recently injured and forced to withdraw from his scheduled title defense against teammate Raufeon Stots, previously booked to headline Bellator 279 on April 23 in Honolulu, Hawaii.
According to a report from CBS Sports, “The Phenom” will be replaced by Juan Archuleta, whom Pettis defeated at Bellator 258 to win the 135-pound title. The fight will be part of the Bantamweight Grand Prix and Archuleta is one of the original eight participants. The winner gets a shot at Pettis, assuming he’s forced to miss the entire tournament.
Should Pettis be able to make a speedy return, he’ll be paired up with someone else in a quarterfinal matchup and defend his title in every tournament round (if he is victorious) all the way up to the Grand Prix finale.
In the Bellator 279 co-main event, Cris Cyborg defends her women’s 145-pound title against Arlene Blencowe, while Hawaii’s own Ilima-Lei Macfarlane will face off against Justine Kish in women’s flyweight action. Also, UFC veteran Yancy Medeiros recently inked a deal to face Emmanuel Sanchez at the event.
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