Bellator 180 is down a little star power.
Keri Anne Taylor-Melendez, wife of Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweight Gilbert Melendez, has suffered an undisclosed training injury and has been forced out of her June 24 flyweight bout with Sadee Monseratte Williams. MMAFighting.com was first to report the withdrawal on Monday. Melendez subsequently confirmed the news on Twitter.
“Injuries suck! Surgery on Wednesday,” Melendez tweeted. “I'll bounce back, my best has yet to come.”
Williams will not be rebooked for Bellator 180, which serves as the lead-in undercard to Bellator NYC, the company's second-ever pay-per-view offering and its first card from historic Madison Square Garden. Melendez-Williams was scheduled to air on Spike's Bellator 180 broadcast leading into the PPV, but will now be replaced by the pro MMA debut of Brooklynite boxer-turned-MMA fighter Heather Hardy, who faces Alice Yauger in a 125-pound bout.
Bellator 180 is headlined by a light heavyweight title rematch between champion Phil Davis and recent free agent signing Ryan Bader. Bellator NYC's PPV main event pits light heavyweights Wanderlei Silva and Chael Sonnen against one another, while heavyweight legend Fedor Emelianenko takes on Matt Mitrione.