Since Glover Teixiera was forced out of his UFC Fight Night 137 headlining bout with Jimi Manuwa due to a shoulder injury the promotion have been seeking a late replacement for the September 22nd bout and it appears they have found one.
A report from ESPN’s Ariel Helwani suggests that UFC middleweight Thiago Santos is currently being lined up to fight Manuwa instead, though at the time of writing the deal hadn’t yet been finalized.
The heavy-handed Brazilian has made a significant impression in the UFC’s 185lb division over the past few years and has won five of his last six fights, including a decision win over Kevin Holland last time out in a short-notice bout at UFC 227 earlier this month.
After that bout Santos signalled his interest in moving up to light-heavyweight for his next fight, and this opportunity to fight Manuwa gives the No.12 ranked middleweight an immediate opportunity to make a big impression in a main event against the No.5 ranked fighter in his new weight class.
Meanwhile, his opponent ‘The Poster Boy’ is coming off back-to-back losses against Volkan Oezdemir and Jan Blachowicz, but did register KO wins over Corey Anderson and Ovince Saint Preux prior to that.