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Islam Makhachev out of UFC Vegas 14 main event, Rafael dos Anjos calls for Michael Chandler as replacement

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The upcoming UFC Vegas 14 card on Nov. 14 has just taken a major hit as Islam Makhachev has been forced out of his main event fight against former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos.

Multiple people with knowledge of the situation, who requested anonymity because promotion had yet to make an announcement, confirmed the news to MMA Fighting on Sunday following an initial report from ESPN.

It’s unclear why Makhachev was forced to withdraw from fight, which had already been rescheduled after it was originally slated to take place this past month at UFC 254; the bout was moved after dos Anjos tested positive for COVID-19.

Unfortunately, now Makhachev has been knocked out of the fight for undisclosed reasons.

A search is currently underway in an attempt to secure a new opponent to face dos Anjos on Saturday night’s card from the UFC APEX in Las Vegas.

The fight is expected to serve as dos Anjos’ return to the lightweight division after spending over three years competing at 170 pounds. Dos Anjos previously reigned as lightweight champion after winning the belt in 2015.

The UFC has not made any official announcements regarding the change to the card, and with the event just six days away, options are limited in terms of replacement opponents.

Dos Anjos wasted no time suggesting a fight against former Bellator champion Michael Chandler, who signed with the UFC as a free agent but has yet to make his octagon debut.