Sunday April 1st 2018. April Fools Day. A day where almost every MMA fan will have seen at least one post from someone joking that the Ferguson vs Khabib fight had been cancelled for one reason or another. How we all laughed. Then, later that evening, the announcement came.
Tony Ferguson was injured.
He’s been pulled from the card.
This is not an April Fools joke.
Fans were shocked and frustrated in equal measure. This is the fourth time we’ve been promised this fight and the fourth time it’s been snatched from our grasp. It’s the fight equivillent of the Loch Ness Monster. Destined to always be talked about, but never to be seen.
It is some consolation that we still have an excellent main event taking place. Reigning featherweight king Max Holloway will be stepping up a division on just six days notice to take on the undefeated Khabib Nurmagomedov.
It was a moment Holloway predicted at the UFC 222/223 press conference in January. Dana White was asked if he would have Eddie Alvarez or someone else lined up incase one of Ferguson or Khabib didn’t make it to the octagon. Holloway immediately piped up claiming he would be more than happy to step in should either fighter be unable to fulfil their contract.
It seems Holloway is as good as his word, taking the fight at just six days notice.
Ferguson posted the following message on his instagram account confirming the news and apologising to all involved.
Despite the previous failed attempts to have the two lightweights meet, it seemed like this time, at last, we would finally get to see the fight we were promised.
Fans, media and fighters all around the world took to social media when they heard the news. Here are some of the highlights.
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Tony heal up man. Just want to advise you, don’t talk too much anymore. Lot of thoughts in my head right now, but I don’t want to become like you. Hope, this lesson will teach you watch your mouth. ❗️ На счёт этой ситуации я просто хочу сказать Тони: больше не болтай, в голове конечно много мыслей, на тебя похожим не буду, надеюсь этот урок научит тебя следить за языком. #ready #ufc223 #Alhamdulillah #победатолькоотВсевышнего