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Rattled UFC 290 fight card suffers yet another huge blow less than 24 hours from showtime

Josiah Harrell’s Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) career seems to have lasted all of four days. According to UFC Roster Watch, Harrell was removed from the promotion’s roster shortly after he was deemed medically unfit to compete at UFC 290 — which is set to go down this Saturday night (July 8, 2023) in Las Vegas, Nevada — following the official weigh-in (full results here).

LIVE! Watch UFC 293 PPV On ESPN+ Here!

MASSIVE MIDDLEWEIGHT MATCH! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) makes its highly anticipated return to Sydney, Australia, for the first time in five years on Sat., Sept. 9, 2023, with a 185-pound world title fight inside Qudos Bank Arena. In the ESPN+-streamed pay-per-view (PPV) main event, Middleweight roost-ruler, Israel Adesanya, plans to silence No. 5-seeded contender, Sean Strickland. In UFC 293’s hard-hitting Heavyweight co-main event, No-6-ranked fan favorite, Tai Tuivasa, locks horns with towering Russian, Alexander Volkov (No. 8).

Don’t miss a single second of EPIC face-punching action!

According to MMA Fighting, a serious undisclosed medical issue on Harrell’s side prompted officials to yank him and scrap his Welterweight fight against Jack Della Maddalena, which he took on just week’s notice after Sean Brady bowed out with a nasty staph infection (see it here). In fact, follow up reports reveal that Harrell has a rare brain disease and will be headed for surgery (full details here).

Harrell was coming in with a perfect mixed martial arts (MMA) record (7-0), having finished all seven of his opponents — four knockouts and three submissions. Unfortunately, it seems as if “Muscle Hamster” won’t be getting a chance to make his UFC debut anytime soon ... if ever.

But, health comes first and foremost.

As for Maddalena, his second canceled fight in little more than one week might come with a silver lining because depending on how long it takes Brady to recover, UFC matchmakers could very well re-book that captivating matchup down the road. Maddalena is undefeated (4-0) inside the Octagon and has once again shown that Contender Series alums are the real deal, with all of his UFC fights ending in the first round.

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 290 fight card RIGHT HERE, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard bouts on ABC/ESPN/ESPN+ at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 290: “Volkanovski vs. Rodriguez” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here. For the updated and finalized UFC 290 fight card and PPV lineup click here.

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