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Ion Cutelaba has tested positive for COVID-19, and as a result, his UFC 252 rematch with Magomed Ankalaev has been pulled from Saturday’s card.
Russian outlet Tass was first to report the news, and it was later confirmed by multiple outlets. UFC 252 takes place at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas and is headlined by a heavyweight championship trilogy bout between Stipe Miocic and Daniel Cormier. It’s currently unclear if the UFC will seek a replacement opponent for Ankalaev.
Cutelaba and Ankalaev initially squared off at UFC Norfolk on Feb. 29, with Ankalaev winning via first-round technical knockout. Cutelaba disputed the stoppage, claiming that he was feigning wobbling as part of his strategy to deceive his opponent. However, Cutelaba’s appeal with the Virgina Athletic Commission was denied. The two light heavyweights were also slated to meet on April 18 before that card was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Cutelaba is 4-4 during his UFC tenure and 15-5 with one no contest as a professional overall. Ankalaev has won 13 of his first 14 professional appearances and is on a four-bout winning streak in the Octagon.
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