An injury has forced former UFC light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz to withdraw from the UFC Columbus event, leaving the March 26 fight card without a scheduled headliner.
A person with knowledge of the promotion’s plans told MMA Fighting that Blachowicz’s fight with Aleksandar Rakic is expected to be rescheduled to a later date. MMA Cultura first reported the news. UFC Columbus takes place at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio.
The nature of Blachowicz’s timetable for return is currently unknown. The bout was to be the ex-champ’s first appearance since a submission loss to Glover Teixeira cost him the title at UFC 267 this past October. Prior to that, he handed middleweight champ Israel Adesanya his first MMA loss in a light heavyweight title fight.
Rakic, meanwhile, will wait longer to get an opportunity to make his case for a title shot. The 29-year-old fighter from Vienna has won six of his seven UFC bouts including his two most recent fights in meetings with Anthony Smith and Thiago Santos, respectively.
Currently scheduled below Blachowicz vs. Rakic on the UFC Columbus card is a flyweight matchup between top contenders Kai Kara-France and Askar Askarov. It’s unclear whether the promotion will install a new fight atop the spring card or promote a matchup to top billing.