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And So It Begins: The #PotatoCurse Claims Its Second Victim, Tony Ferguson

(Wait, it was the *other* guy who got injured for once? You’re kidding…)

For close to a week now, we’ve been hinting that a great rash of injuries was set to befall the UFC. Chalk it up to our well-documented knack for predicting the future, chalk it up to the series of Rube Goldbergian traps we placed in the homes of several prominent MMA fighters, but we haven’t help but shake the feeling that 2016 will bring with it an injury curse that makes the injury curse of 2012 look like a series of bumps and bruises.

The Great Injury Curse of 2016 — henceforth to be known and referred to as the #PotatoCurse by *all* MMA media entities — got off to a promising start last week, claiming Daniel Cormier just weeks out from his highly-anticipated title fight rematch with uber rival Jon Jones. Last night, the #PotatoCurse claimed its second victim in the form of lightweight Tony Ferguson, forcing him out of his #1 contender bout against Khabib Nurmagomedov and destroying the second straight UFC main event in as many weeks.

Details after the jump.

Yes, just two weeks out from his UFC on FOX 19 main event, “El Cucuy” took to Instagram to relay the news of an injury that you don’t hear a lot of in *any* professional sport.

“I am out of my Fight Due to Blood/Fluid in my Lung,” wrote Ferguson. “Usually I can Power Through These things. Doc said it wasn’t wise to Fight due to any more trauma could be terminal.”

Ferguson later wrote that he should be cleared to fight again in a few weeks, but in his absence, the UFC went ahead and bumped the evening’s scheduled co-main event between Rashad Evans and Glover Teixeira into the main event slot. This now makes for the second time in a row that this Nurmy vs. Cucuy has been cancelled due to injury.

But there may be hope, in that no less than 5 fighters from two different weight classes have offered to step in against Nurmagomedov on extremely short notice. As you might expect, one of these people is Donald Cerrone, but perhaps the most intriguing name in the mix is current lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos. In a message posted to his Twitter, Dos Anjos called out the Dagestani grappler (and the last man to beat him) for a fight this summer.

“Sorry to hear Ferguson is out. @TeamKhabib We have some unfinished business, I’ll be ready in July.”

Ferguson’s response was nothing short of nuclear.

BJ Penn also threw his name in the mix, but with the UFC not wanting to witness its first in-ring murder anytime soon, his name was quickly thrown out. As of this write-up, it looks like Cerrone is being given top bill to face Nurmagomedov in a welterweight contest, but only if he can still fight Patrick Cote in June as well.

Honestly, we’re still trying to wrap our heads around the idea that Khabib Nurmagomedov has made it through an entire training camp intact. We’ll let you know who the UFC decides on as an opponent for him when/if it happens.

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