Disappointing news struck fight fans as the highly anticipated showdown between Ian Machado Garry and Vicente Luque at UFC 296 has been abruptly shelved due to unfortunate health circumstances surrounding Garry.
The UFC CEO, Dana White, confirmed the unfortunate development after reports emerged that Garry had fallen ill. Initially attributed to a no-show at the UFC 296 media day, it was later revealed that Garry's absence stemmed from contracting pneumonia, forcing the cancellation of his bout against Luque.
"Ian Garry started with the flu that turned into pneumonia," White disclosed on Twitter. "So that fight is off and is not happening. It is true."
Garry, who was set to address the media in the lead-up to the event, failed to make an appearance, raising speculation. Earlier concerns about his family's safety, following a tense exchange with UFC middleweight champion Sean Strickland, weren't linked to his absence but were overshadowed by his health situation.
Unfortunately, Garry's recovery timeline aligns with missing out on the battle against Luque, compelling him to regroup and focus on recuperation. Reports suggest a potential return to the Octagon might not materialize until 2024.
The UFC, as of now, has not revealed a replacement fight from the undercard to fill the void left by the Garry vs. Luque clash on the main card. UFC 296, still packed with 13 thrilling fights, moves forward despite the unfortunate setback in the welterweight division.
While Garry’s absence is regrettable, the UFC 296 fight card remains brimming with anticipation as fighters prepare to script their chapters of valor and triumph within the unforgiving confines of the Octagon.