Rafael dos Anjos looking for new opponent after Islam Makhachev withdraws from UFC Vegas 14

Rafael dos Anjos
Image: @ufc on Instagram

UFC lightweight Islam Makhachev is out of his upcoming main event fight against Rafael dos Anjos at next weekend’s UFC Vegas 14 event.

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported on Sunday that Makhachev is out of the fight and the UFC is looking for a short-notice replacement. Makhachev vs. dos Anjos was set to be the five-round main event of UFC Vegas 14, which takes place on Saturday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada. This is the second time this particular matchup has fallen through. It was originally set to be part of the UFC 254 PPV but dos Anjos tested positive for COVID-19.

Breaking: Islam Makhachev ( @MAKHACHEVMMA ) out of Saturday’s UFC Fight Night main event, per sources. UFC looking for a short-notice replacement to face Rafael dos Anjos ( @RdosAnjosMMA ) on Saturday.

After the word broke that Makhachev was hurt, dos Anjos took to Twitter to confirm that he lost his opponent, and he mentioned Michael Chandler as someone who could fill in.

I wish @MAKHACHEVMMA a speed recovery. Looking for a new partner to dance. Looks like @MikeChandlerMMA is ready to go. Your move!

Makhachev is one of the top up-and-coming lightweights in the UFC and for a few years now he has been looking for a big-name opponent. Many fighters have turned him down because he is ranked low in the top-15 yet many consider him to be someone with championship qualities. Finally, a top fighter in the form of Dos Anjos answers the call, and unfortunately, Makhachev is now the one who isn’t able to go. Very disappointing.

As dos Anjos mentioned, Chandler is someone who makes sense to fight him on short notice considering he was just training for a fight at UFC 254 that didn’t happen. There are some other top-15 lightweights who would also make for a fun fight, including Beneil Dariush and Diego Ferreira. With the event five days away, there won’t be many options.

Who do you hope replaces Islam Makhachev against Rafael dos Anjos?