Injury and illness appear to have swept right through the UFC ranks in recent months and the heavyweight division in particular has been badly effected by it.
Brazilian heavyweight fighter Gabriel Gonzaga was all set to fight Junior Dos Santos at UFC 108 in what would have been one of the stand-out fights on the card. Unfortunately the bout, scheduled for January 2nd, will no longer take place as Gonzaga has been forced to pull out with a staph infection.
With current champion Brock Lesnar out indefinitely after intestinal surgery, and a possible interim title up for grabs, now would be the perfect time for the rest of the division to step into the limelight.
The problem is that most of them are on the treatment table as well. Current top contender Shane Carwin is currently out with a knee injury, Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira is on the sidelines with a staph infection and up and coming prospect Todd Duffee is also out of action with an undisclosed problem.
Cain Velasquez would appear to be the obvious choice to replace Gonzaga, but they may be looking to keep him under wraps for an interim title shot in the Spring against Shane Carwin. If that proves to be the case then they may look to shuffle the pack and bring in someone like Ben Rothwell to fight Dos Santos instead.