UFC 213 took place several weeks ago as the finale of the UFC’s international fight week. While the event was expected to host a double header of title fights, the main event scrap between Amanda Nunes and Valentina Shevchenko was called off after Nunes went to the hospital reportedly feeling ill.
Ultimately, after losing the main event scrap, UFC women’s strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk attempted to step in and fight Valentina Shevchenko on short notice for the inaugural women’s flyweight title. Despite fans desire for the fight to happen, the NSAC revealed that Jedrzejczyk would be unable to get medical clearance to fight at the event on such short notice given that women must take a pregnancy test 10 days out before the fight so as to ensure that they aren’t in the early stages of pregnancy.
With the UFC unable to use a fill-in opponent for Shevchenko, the fight was scrapped and the co-main event scrap between Robert Whittaker and Yoel Romero for the interim middleweight title was promoted to the main event. In that fight, Whittaker weathered an early knee injury, and managed to go on to win the fight via unanimous decision despite being unable to feel steady on his knee.
According to MMAFighting’s Dave Meltzer, the event bombed as a whole, doing between 125,000 and 150,000 PPV buys, which would rank it as the lowest pay-per view of 2017 for the UFC. In addition, the preliminary card marked the worst ratings for a preliminary card in nearly 3 years. That portion of the card was headlined by a heavyweight scrap between Oleksiy Oliynyk and Travis Browne, where Oliynyk used his superb ground game to pick up a 2nd round submission win over the UFC heavyweight.
Despite it’s poor ratings, the main event scrap between Yoel Romero and Robert Whittaker was praised by fans.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 7/20/2017.