Multiple people with knowledge of the promotion’s plans, who requested anonymity because the news wasn’t publicly announced, confirmed an MMA Junkie report of Cannonier role for Saturday’s fight. The 39-year-old Texas native will weigh in for the event and step up in case of any issues with the scheduled headliner.
UFC 293 takes place Saturday at Qudos Bank Arena in Sydney. The event’s main card airs live on ESPN+ pay-per-view.
Cannonier fell short for the title 14 months ago when he faced champ Adesanya at UFC 276. The setback snapped a 5-1 run he built at middleweight after competing in the light heavyweight and heavyweight divisions.
Since then, Cannonier has won back-to-back fights, outpointing Strickland and, most recently, two-time title challenger Marvin Vettori.