Eryk Anders is stepping in on six days' notice to fight Thiago Santos in the main event of Saturday's UFC Fight Night São Paulo event, per sources. Anders is replacing Jimi Manuwa. Fight will be at 205 pounds. First reported by @mmajunkie.— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) September 17, 2018
The oft-changed headliner of UFC Fight Night 137 just got changed one more time, less than a week out from the event.
Jimi Manuwa, who was set to fight Thiago Santos on Sept. 22 in Sao Paulo, has withdrawn from the bout for unspecified reasons. Into his place steps Eryk Anders, who scored a highlight-reel knockout of Tim Williams at UFC Fight Night 135 in Lincoln, Nebraska just three weeks ago. He will face the Brazilian "Marreta," who was himself a replacement for the injured Glover Teixeira. MMA Junkie was the first to report the change in booking.
The light heavyweight main event of UFC Fight Night 137 is now composed of two rising middleweight contenders who will look to enhance their stock in their native division while they collect a short-notice paycheck. The 11-1 Anders used the rarely-seen soccer kick knockout over Williams to bounce back from his lone career setback so far, a decision loss to Lyoto Machida. Meanwhile, Santos, who landed the bout on the back of some Twitter barbs aimed at Manuwa in the wake of Teixeira's injury, sits at 10-5 in the Ultimate Fighting Championship and has been on the fringes of contention at 185 pounds for several years.
UFC Fight Night 137 takes place Sept. 22 at Ibapuera Gymnasium in Sao Paulo, Brazil.