PFL 4 has seen one of Thursday’s biggest fights changed.
MMA Fighting confirmed with sources with knowledge of the changes that Anthony Pettis has been forced to withdraw from PFL 4 due to an illness. Two-time lightweight champion Natan Schulte (20-4-1) will take Pettis’ place to fight Alexander Martinez (8-0, 1 NC), while Pettis has been rescheduled to face Raush Manfio on June 25.
Ag. Fight was first to report the news.
Schulte and Manfio were scheduled to fight Thursday following the withdrawal of Schulte’s original opponent Mikhail Odintsov. The two close friends—Schulte is the godfather to Manfio’s daughter—and American Top Team training partners now avoid a clash, unless they qualify for the playoffs and have to fight at a later date.
This is a must-win scenario for Schulte, who has yet to earn points in the PFL standings after losing a unanimous decision to Marcin Held at PFL 1. A loss to Martinez will knock him out of the playoff picture.
Martinez can cement a postseason spot with a victory against Schulte. The unbeaten Paraguayan won a split decision over Loik Radzhabov at PFL 1 to put three points on the board.
See the updated PFL 4 lineup below:
Main Card (ESPN2, ESPN+, 10 p.m. ET)
Preliminaries (ESPN+, 7 p.m. ET)
Natan Schulte vs. Alexander Martinez
Alexander K. Lee contributed to this report.