Alexander Gustafsson sustained a torn meniscus in his knee while training and was forced to withdraw from his UFC 178 main event fight against Jon Jones.
Daniel Cormier has been named an injury replacement and will face Jones for the UFC light-heavyweight title Sept. 27 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Cormier (15-0) is a former Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix champion and is coming off a dominant submission victory over Dan Henderson at UFC 173 on May 24. Following that win, the two-time member of the United States Olympic wrestling team had some choice words for the champion.
“Jon Jones, you can’t run away from me forever,” Cormier said. “I’m the kid at the wrestling tournament that is always in your bracket. No matter where you go, I’m coming. You better hurry because I’m getting better.”
The 35-year-old was expected to undergo surgery on his right knee to repair a damaged LCL and ACL, but he elected to postpone the operation.
In addition to dominating Henderson, Cormier holds notable wins over heavyweights Frank Mir, Roy Nelson, Antonio Silva and Josh Barnett. Cormier decided to move to the 205-pound division earlier this year and has been hounding Jones ever since he made the drop.
Jones (20-1) is considered by many to be the pound-for-pound best fighter in MMA. The 27-year-old won a unanimous decision over Glover Texeira in his last outing at UFC 172 in April.
It’s unknown at this time how long Gustafsson (16-2) will be out of action. His scheduled tilt with Jones was set to be a rematch of 2013’s Fight of the Year in which Jones and Gustafsson went back and forth for five dogged rounds at UFC 165 in Toronto last September with Jones winning a unanimous decision.
UFC 178 was originally slated to take place in Toronto, however it was moved to Las Vegas after UFC officials felt the most anticipated rematch of the year should take place in the city regarded as the fight capital of the world.
Here is a look at the fights currently scheduled for UFC 178:
– Jon Jones vs Daniel Cormier
– Dominick Cruz vs Takeya Mizugaki
– Conor McGregor vs Dustin Poirier
– Cat Zingano vs Amanda Nunes
– Tim Kennedy vs Yoel Romero
– Patrick Cote vs Stephen Thompson
– John Howard vs Brian Ebersole