Ortiz Out, Davis To Face Nogueira At UFC Fight Night 24An injury in training has forced former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Tito Ortiz out of a main event bout with Antonio Rogerio “Minotoro” Nogueira at UFC Fight Night 24 on March 26th. Nogueira will remain on the card and is now slated to face unbeaten prospect Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis.

News of Ortiz’s withdrawal from the card was announced by UFC President Dana White this evening, and MMAjunkie.com subsequently reported that Ortiz suffered a bad cut from an accidental headbutt during training. Davis will now step into the biggest fight of his career when he meets Nogueira.

Davis (8-0-0) has progressively risen to become one of the top prospects in the UFC’s light heavyweight division. The wrestling powerhouse defeated former WEC champion Brian Stann in his UFC debut last February and earned three more wins before the end of the year. Most recently, Davis submitted Tim “The Barbarian” Boetsch with an extremely impressive modified Kimura at UFC 123 and, after multiple changes in opponent, he will now take a big step up in competition to challenge Nogueira. A victory would vault Davis from prospect to legitimate contender status.

Nogueira (19-4-0) made his name in Pride Fighting Championships alongside his twin brother, Rodrigo, but opted not to sign with the UFC following PRIDE’s collapse in 2007. He won five fights in a row before finally making his promotional debut at UFC 106, where he knocked out Luiz “Banha” Cane early in the first round. Nogueira then eked out a controversial Split Decision victory over Jason “The Hitman” Brilz at UFC 114, but is coming off of a loss to Ryan “Darth” Bader in his most recent bout. He now needs a victory to get back into the title mix.

UFC Fight Night 24 takes place on March 26th at the Key Arena in Seattle, Washington.


UFC Fight Night 24 Card (subject to change):

– Antonio Rogerio “Minotoro” Nogueira vs Phil “Mr. Wonderful” Davis
– Dan “The Outlaw” Hardy vs Anthony “Rumble” Johnson
– Duane “Bang” Ludwig vs Amir Sadollah
– Nam Phan vs Leonard “Bad Boy” Garcia

– Mackens “Mack da Menace” Semerzier vs Alex “Bruce Leroy” Caceres
– Mike Russow vs Jon Madsen
– John “The Hitman” Hathaway vs Kris “Savage” McCray
– Michael “Mayday” McDonald vs Nick Pace
– Sean “Big Sexy” McCorkle vs Christian Morecraft
– Mario Miranda vs Aaron “A-Train” Simpson
– Dennis “Superman” Hallman vs Anthony “T.J.” Waldburger
– Nik “The Carnie” Lentz vs Waylon Lowe [*]

* Not yet officially announced.



(Photo Credit: Sherdog.com)