UFC On ESPN 28 has been ravaged by call-offs in recent days, with the latest fighter to pull out being Mounir Lazzez.
Due to the previous withdrawals of Shamil Abdurakhimov vs. Chris Daukaus and Sam Alvey vs. Roman Kopylov from the main card, Lazzez vs. Niklas Stolze had been promoted from the prelims to co-main event status, but now that’s had to be scrapped too after Lazzez ran into VISA issues that will prevent him travelling to Las Vegas in time for the event.
Stolze has since vented his frustration at the late cancellation, although he has now been given a short-notice replacement opponent in the shape of Jared Gooden.
The 28-year-old Stolze is looking for his first UFC win after suffering a unanimous decision loss in his promotional debut against Raman Emveev a year ago, while his new opponent, Gooden is in a similar position, having lost his first two fights in a row against Alan Jouban and Abubakar Nurmagomedov.
The switch in opponent has also resulted in the UFC opting to go with a different co-main event, with Rhani Yahya vs. Kyung Ho Kang now moving further up the main card to take that spot on a line-up, below the still-intact main event middleweight match-up between Uriah Hall and Sean Strickland.