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Daniel Cormier apologizes for having to withdraw from UFC 197

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier went to Instagram on Saturday to clear the air about his decision to withdraw from UFC 197 later this month.

The decision to not fight on April 23rd was one of the hardest decisions I've had to make. I've been scheduled to fight 18 times and I have made that walk every time. I want to apologize to Jon Jones, Lorenzo Fertitta, Dana White and all of the UFC fans for not being able to defend my title. This truly saddens me, but as with everything else in life, it goes on. The recovery should not take very long and I can't wait to compete and defend my title again. For all the fans, thanks for your support, I appreciate each and every one of you. DC

Cormier was replaced in the main event by Ovince St. Preux. Jones and St. Preux will compete for the interim UFC light heavyweight title on April 23 in Las Vegas. UFC president Dana White made the announcement during Saturday evening's SportsCenter.

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