Claudia Gadelha forced out of UFC 253 fight with Yan Xiaonan

Claudia Gadelha
Image Credit: Claudia Gadelha's Instagram

Claudia Gadelha is out of her upcoming UFC 253 bout after suffering a knee injury.

The strawweight won’t be able to fight at the September 26 pay-per-view event against Yan Xiaonan.

Their matchup announcement was originally made by Combate and was scheduled to take place in Las Vegas, with Israel Adesanya and Paulo Costa featured in the main event.

Gadelha had already flown over to Vegas and checked into the UFC Performance Institute where she got her injury checked. Unfortunately, the trip confirmed that she won’t be able to fight on the upcoming card. The former title challenger is riding high off a two-fight win streak again Randa Markos and Angela Hill. Her last loss was to Nina Ansaroff by unanimous decision in 2018.

It’s not the first time that her knee has caused her issues. The Brazilian had to go into surgery in June 2018 to repair an LCL injury in her right knee that was sustained prior to her UFC 255 bout against Carla Esparza where she won by decision.

There was talk of a potential rematch between Gadelha and Esparza, but the UFC decided to go in a different direction as Esparza was booked against Marina Rodriguez and Gadelha was booked against Xiaonan. It is unclear when Claudia Gadelha will be able to return to the Octagon and fight again.

Meanwhile, Xiaonan is hoping the UFC can find her a last-minute replacement opponent. The Chinese strawweight has amassed a 12-1 record and is is the No. 10 ranked women’s strawweight in the UFC. She joined the UFC roster in 2017 when she beat Kailin Curran and has achieved an undefeated record within the organization. In her last bout, she defeated former title challenger Karolina Kowalkiewicz by unanimous decision.

On the same card, Dominick Reyes will return for his second light heavyweight title fight, but this time he will fight Jan Blachowicz. They will be fighting for the empty throne since Reyes’ former opponent, Jon Jones vacated the title last month.