Ilir ‘The Sledgehammer’ Latifi has again had to withdraw from his rescheduled fight with Aleksei Oleinik at UFC 273, and so Jared Vanderaa has now been drafted in to replace him.
Latifi had been set to fight Oleinik at UFC On ESPN 33 last weekend, but then fell ill on fight day and so the bout was postponed for a couple of weeks until UFC 273. At this stage there’s no details on whether it’s that same illness that’s kept him from competing on this occasion.
The 29-year-old Vanderra steps in on a little over a weeks notice looking to turn around his fortunes in the promotion as he’s so far mustered just one win from his four Octagon appearances.
It’s a record that began with a a TKO loss to Sergey Spivak in his UFC debut last year, followed by his solitary decision win over Justin Tafa. However, he’s since suffered back-to-back defeats against Alexander Romanov and Andrei Arlovski.
Meanwhile, the 43-year-old ‘Boa Constrictor’ Oleinik is also in a tough spot, having lost his last three fights in a row, including back-to-back TKO losses against Derrick Lewis and Chris Daukaus followed by unanimous decision loss to Sergey Spivak in June of last year.