James Gallagher (9-1) will now face UFC veteran Roman Salazar (12-8 (1)) in next Friday’s Bellator 227 event in Dublin, Ireland.
The short notice switch was necessitated after it emerged that Gallagher’s original opponent, English fighter Cal Ellenor, had withdrawn from their scheduled contest due to injury. After Bellator officials scrambled to locate a new opponent for the Irishman, they settled on the 21-fight veteran Salazar who had a three-fight tenure in the UFC between 2014 and 2015.
The fight will be contested at a catchweight of 140-pounds. News of the bout was reported by MMA Fighting.
Gallagher enters the bout after securing a first-round submission win against Steven Graham in Dublin earlier this year, as well as a decision victory against Jeremiah Labiano in July. Salazar, meanwhile, is currently on a two-fight skid and hasn’t competed for a year. His most high profile fight to date came against the late Japanese legend ‘Kid’ Yamamoto at UFC 184 but the bout was declared a no-contest after the American fighter was deemed unable to continue following an eye poke.
Gallagher is no stranger to short notice opponents having faced the situation several times in his young career to date. His previously scheduled opponent, Cal Ellenor, released a video to social media explaining that he had been forced to withdraw after receiving abnormal results to a brain scan