Khabib Nurmagomedov hasn’t competed since April 2014. | Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
An injury has forced Khabib Nurmagomedov to withdraw from his scheduled UFC 187 showdown with Donald Cerrone.
Sherdog.com confirmed with a source close to the bout that Nurmagomedov is likely out following an initial report from MMAJunkie.com. The UFC has yet to make an official announcement regarding the injury. Promotion officials are reportedly searching for a replacement opponent for Cerrone.
Nurmagomedov and Cerrone were initially slated to fight at UFC 178 before a knee injury knocked “The Eagle” out of the contest shortly after bout agreements were signed. The winner of the proposed lightweight clash was expected to be next in line for a 155-pound title shot.
UFC 187 takes place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on May 23 and is headlined by a light heavyweight title bout between Daniel Cormier and Anthony Johnson. In the co-main event, Chris Weidman defends the middleweight strap against Vitor Belfort.
Nurmagomedov has not competed since April 2014, when he earned a dominant three-round verdict over current lightweight titlist Rafael dos Anjos at UFC on Fox 11. The 26-year-old American Kickboxing Academy product is undefeated in 22 professional appearances, including six triumphs in the Octagon.
Cerrone, meanwhile, has won seven straight fights since falling to dos Anjos via unanimous decision at UFC Fight Night “Condit vs. Kampmann 2” in August 2013. Most recently, “Cowboy” outpointed Benson Henderson at UFC Fight Night in Boston on Jan. 18.