On Thursday, the UFC announced that the UFC Fight Night event scheduled to take place in Manila was canceled and needs to be rescheduled.
The full statement from the UFC reads:
Manila, Philippines – UFC® announced today that it will reschedule its UFC Fight Night event planned for Oct. 15 in Manila, Philippines due to the loss of the main event. Former UFC champion BJ Penn was forced to withdraw from the main event bout with Ricardo Lamas due to injury.
“I suffered a rib injury in training and I apologize to the fans in Manila who were expecting to watch me compete,” Penn said. “I hope to be back in the Octagon soon.”
Athletes scheduled to compete on the Oct. 15 card will be rebooked at upcoming UFC events in the near future. Each athlete set to compete on Oct. 15 will also receive compensation due to the card being rescheduled. With its 2016 calendar finalized, UFC officials will discuss future dates for the event.
“SMLEI and UFC will continue to work together in the future to deliver exciting live events for fans,” Edgar Tejerero, President of SM Lifestyle Entertainment, Inc. said.
Fans who have purchased tickets to the event should seek refunds at the point of purchase.
Many were thinking that with Penn’s injury and the main event in jeopardy, it was the major reason the event fell apart.
However, MMA insider @TalkMMA tweeted that was not the case.
@TalkMMA tweeted, “No, it is literally because of the bullshit that the Filipino government is pulling,” replying to a tweet claiming that the entire card was pulled due to Penn being injured.
No, it is literally because of the bullshit that the Filipino government is pulling https://t.co/EXAJdMOG95
— #Dizz © (@TalkMMA) October 6, 2016
FloSports Jeremy Botter followed up with more information tweeting, “As first reported by @TalkMMA, the Philippines government essentially forced this card cancelation with crazy drug testing issues.”
As first reported by @TalkMMA, the Philippines government essentially forced this card cancelation with crazy drug testing issues.
— Jeremy Botter (@jeremybotter) October 6, 2016