If this wasn’t the perfect chance to pull the ol’ switcheroo, I don’t know what is. (Pic: MMAFight.com)
Just as other cards have been steadily beefing up their rosters, UFC 133 has taken another major hit. The UFC announced last night that Antonio Rogerio Nogueira has pulled out of his bout against Rich Franklin due to a shoulder injury.
The promotion now finds itself in the exact position it was in only days ago when an injury to Phil Davis sent them scrambling to find a suitable light heavyweight replacement for their main event bout. It was slim pickings at that time, with Machida attempting to ransom off his services for “Anderson Silva money” and Tito taking the fight after initially turning it down. They now have three weeks to sign a replacement or remove Franklin from the card.
Machida’s reasons for turning down the Evans bout—namely short notice and the need to relocate his entire training camp to the US—have only been exacerbated at this point with even fewer days on the calendar. Of course, maybe he’s willing to suck it up after Dana was vocal about his feelings on the matter. Middleweights Chris Leben and Chael Sonnen had also volunteered their services, but Sonnen now has a dance partner. Could we see “The Crippler” make the jump to 205lbs to take a swing at another legend?