BREAKING: Robert Whittaker Off UFC 234 Card

Robert Whittaker
Fernando Quiles Jr., MMA News

UFC 234 (see live results here) will go on without a title fight.

ESPN’s Brett Okamoto has broken the news that UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker has been pulled from tonight’s card due to a hernia in his abdomen. UFC president Dana White broke the news to Okamoto. This is said to have not been due to a weight-cutting related issue.

Okamoto later noted that Whittaker will be undergoing surgery for the hernia issue:

The original middleweight co-main event between Anderson Silva and Israel Adesanya is now the UFC 234 headliner. Lando Vannata vs. Marcos Rosa has also been promoted from the UFC Fight Pass prelims to the co-main event.

It’s a tough break for both Whittaker and Gastelum. “The Reaper” has yet to defend his UFC middleweight title. Yoel Romero missed weight, so the rematch didn’t count as a title defense for Whittaker. This is also the second time Whittaker hasn’t been able to defend his title in Australia. He was set to take on Luke Rockhold back in February 2018, but an injury derailed those plans as well.

As for Gastelum, he earned his opportunity after going 3-1, 1 NC in his last five outings. His split decision victory over Jacare Souza sealed the deal. Now, he’ll have to wait a little longer for his championship opportunity.

How badly do you think UFC 234 PPV sales will suffer now that Robert Whittaker is off the card?