After the UFC 196 heavyweight championship main event fell apart, UFC officials have apparently decided to yank the event off of pay-per-view and move it to cable television on FOX Sports 1.
Although the UFC has had yet to make a public announcement as of the time of publication, UFC president Dana White told Yahoo Sports of the move on Tuesday.
The revamped card will feature Johny Hendricks vs. Stephen Thompson in a welterweight main event. The bout was originally the co-main event prior to the headliner’s collapse over the past 48 hours.
The initial UFC 196 main event was slated to be a heavyweight rematch between Fabricio Werdum and Cain Velasquez for Werdum’s title belt. Velasquez, however, dropped out of the fight on Sunday due to an injured back. UFC officials moved swiftly and enlisted Stipe Miocic as a replacement in the title fight.
Less than 24 hours later, Werdum went public in the Brazilian press, saying that he was also injured and would not fight at UFC 196.
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Though the UFC scrambled to preserve its annual Super Bowl Weekend event, without a suitable option for a pay-per-view worthy headliner, the decision was reportedly made to move the fight card onto FOX Sports 1. It will apparently remain numbered as UFC 196, likely in order to keep the numbering in line for the promotion’s planned blockbuster UFC 200 event this summer.
The full UFC 196 fight card remains intact, minus the heavyweight title fight.
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