After a tumultuous couple weeks, Anderson Silva has been officially removed from the UFC 212 card in Rio de Janeiro.
The Las Vegas-based promotion announced the news in a statement on Thursday. Earlier this week, Silva revealed that he had disassembled his training camp because it appeared unlikely that the UFC would be able to find him a new opponent after original foe Kelvin Gastelum was pulled from the card due to a positive marijuana test.
"Following the April 6 removal of Kelvin Gastelum from his UFC 212 bout against Anderson Silva, UFC officials attempted to find a replacement to meet Silva on June 3,” the statement read. “However an opponent was not secured to face the former middleweight champion on short notice, prompting his removal from the card at Jeunesse Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
“Due to Anderson Silva's withdrawal, customers may request a full refund of their purchased tickets until May 18, 2017.”
Silva has grown increasingly frustrated with the UFC once Gastelum was removed from the card. “The Spider” initially threatened to retire if he wasn’t granted an interim title shot against Yoel Romero at the event, and he later blasted “almighty” Dana White, claiming the UFC boss had the middleweight division in a “lockout.”
UFC 212 takes place at HSBC Arena on June 3 and is headlined by a featherweight championship clash between Jose Aldo and Max Holloway. In the co-main event, former strawweight title challengers Claudia Gadelha and Karolina Kowalkiewicz will lock horns.