Lightweights battle at United Center
A fight featuring a pair of housemates from Season 12 of “The Ultimate Fighter” has been scrapped for Chicago later this month thanks to injury.
Cody McKenzie has been forced out of his Jan. 28 fight against castmate and TUF 12 lightweight finalist Michael Johnson. But Shane Roller has been booked to step in on short notice as his replacement. The UFC announced McKenzie’s injury and the new fight Thursday night.
Roller (10-5, 1-2 UFC) has hit a rough patch with two straight losses for the first time in his career. The former three-time All-American wrestler at Oklahoma State was knocked out by Melvin Guillard in the first round at UFC 132 last July, then submitted by TJ Grant in October. Roller won his UFC debut last March with a knockout of Thiago Tavares at UFC 128 after coming over following a highly successful 6-2 run in the WEC in which he lost only to future lightweight champs Anthony Pettis and Ben Henderson. His loss to Pettis was a title eliminator, and Pettis went on to beat Henderson to win the final WEC 155-pound belt.
Johnson (9-6, 1-2 UFC) is also looking to rebound following a loss. After falling to Jonathan Brookins in the TUF 12 Finale, Johnson came back with a first-round TKO of Eddie Faaloloto last June. But in October, he became the latest Paul Sass submission victim, tapping out to a heel hook in the first round.
UFC on Fox: Evans vs. Davis features a main event light heavyweight fight between former champion Rashad Evans and Phil Davis, a co-main event middleweight contenders bout between Chael Sonnen and Mark Munoz and a middleweight fight between Michael Bisping and Demian Maia. It will be the UFC’s second card on the Fox network, but the first under the seven-year broadcast deal that began on Jan. 1.