The much-anticipated heavyweight title clash between Jon Jones and Stipe Miocic set for the UFC’s return to Madison Square Garden next month is off.
It was revealed overnight by a rather glum looking UFC CEO Dana White that a pectoral injury sustained by Jones will likely sideline him for several months, ruling him out of the November 11 fight.
BREAKING NEWS…………… Sergei Pavlovich vs Tom Aspinall for the Interim Heavyweight Championship. Main Event is Jiri Prochazka vs Alex Pereira. #UFC295 is LIVE at MSG on ESPN+ PPV pic.twitter.com/SaPAwpyHi2
— danawhite (@danawhite) October 25, 2023
“Jon Jones was training last night, got injured, he was wrestling and he tore the tendon that connects your pec to to the bone, off the bone,” White said in a video posted to social media. “[Out] eight months, going to need surgery. He’s out.”
It is not all bad news, however. The prior co-main event fight to contest the vacant light heavyweight championship between Jiri Prochazka and Alex Pereira has been upgraded to the main event, while — and this is a big one — surging heavyweight contenders Tom Aspinall and Sergei Pavlovich will meet in a fight to determine the next UFC interim heavyweight champion. Pavlovich was already serving as the backup fighter to the original main event fight.
It appears as though Miocic has been removed from the card entirely. The former heavyweight champion had previously suggested that the bout against Jones might be the final of his career, and it remains to be seen if he will wait out Jones’ expected eight-month recovery time.
The late changes to the UFC 295 card come just two weeks after UFC matchmakers were forced to work overtime after Paulo Costa and Charles Oliveira were late withdrawals from this month’s UFC 294 in Abu Dhabi.