Brian Ortega vs. Diego Lopes New UFC 303 Co-Main Event After Hill vs. Ulberg Falls Through

An injury to former light-heavyweight champion Jamahal Hill has forced him out of his UFC 303 co-main event fight with Carlos Ulberg in Las Vegas on June 29th.

It’s a second major bombshell for the UFC 303 at the same time as the eagerly awaited comeback of Conor McGregor opposite Michael Chandler in the main event was also canceled due to the superstar suffering an as-yet undisclosed injury.

That’s left UFC officials scrambling to find suitable replacements for the event that will serve as the centrepiece of their International Fight Week celebrations in just two weeks time, and along with the news we reported earlier that a 205lb title fight rematch between Alex Pereira and Jiri Prochazka will now headline the show it’s also been revealed that the new co-main event features Brian Ortega vs. Diego Lopes.

Ortega comes in on two weeks notice for this opportunity after successfully avenging a loss to Yair Rodriguez earlier in the year, submitting him in the third round in Mexico City.

Now the former title contender will take on a rising force in Lopes, who is no stranger to being a late replacement as that’s how he made his UFC debut a year ago, coming in on five days notice to surprise many people by giving the undefeated Movsar Evloev a very tough fight, though he ultimately lost on the scorecards.

Lopes has since gone on to prove that performance was no fluke by winning three fights in a row against Gavin Tucker, Pat Sabatini and Sodiq Yusuff, with all coming in the first round by either strikes or submission.

Still, this is a huge step-up for the now 14th ranked Lopes to now be going up against the No.3 ranked Ortega in the co-main event of a high-profile pay-per-view.

Meanwhile, though Jamahal Hill is out, Carlos Ulberg will still remain on the main card as Anthony Smith has now agreed to fight him on short-notice.

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