After pulling out of this weekend’s UFC Fight Night 76 event in Ireland with Ben Rothwell due to an injury, Stipe Miocic has now been re-booked to fight Andrei Arlovski as the co-main event of UFC 195 on January 2nd instead.
Interestingly, Arlovski has since revealed that the UFC initially offered him the chance to step in on two weeks notice to fight Rothwell this weekend, and while he was interested he says his team talked him out of it.
“Actually the UFC contact my management team and I was like in, but my trainers, my managers said, ‘Listen, guy, we have to slow down a little bit,” Alrovski told MMAJunkie. “We have to wait. Maybe it’s not good idea.’ I have to agree with them, so now it’s even better because I’m going to fight Miocic on Jan. 2, which is great.”
It definitely has worked out for the better as Arlovski will now have a full training camp, will be co-main eventing a pay-per-view rather than a Fight Pass card, and is now fighting the No.3 ranked contender rather than the 7th which would put him in a strong position for a title shot if he emerges victorious.
It’s a tough fight though with Miocic having lost only one of his last five fights, that being a close decision loss to former champion Junior dos Santos. Arlovski is on a good run too though, going four fights unbeaten since re-signing with the UFC in 2014.
Spare a thought for Rothwell in all this though. He’s actually still in Ireland this week despite no longer having a fight there due to Miocic’s call-off, and has been spending his time campaigning to fight Arlovski next, so he now admits to being “disheartened” to discover that he’s been overlooked and remains in the dark about what comes next for him.
Nevertheless, Arlovski Vs Miocic is the option the UFC have ran with and it now joins a UFC 195 fight card that’s headlined by a welterweight title encounter between Robbie Lawler and Carlos Condit.