After going through two main events and co-main events, UFC 153 appeared to be doomed as a Pay Per View not worth the phone call to order. After the featherweight championship bout fell through twice the card appeared to be in jeopardy, but an unexpected improvement appeared as longtime reigning Middleweight champion Anderson Silva has stepped up to headline the card in a Light Heavyweight bout against TUF1 finalist and longtime fan favorite Stephan Bonnar. With all that has happened to this event, the top portion of this card has gone through some redesign with a new addition and change-up for one bout.
UFC 153’s woes first started following UFC 151’s cancellation. Originally slated to headline UFC 151 Light Heavyweight champion Jon Jones was switched to headline UFC 152 in need of a new opponent. With an opponent needed former Light Heavyweight champion Vitor Belfort offered to step in as Jones’ new opponent, and was then switched to headline UFC 152 when originally slated to face fellow Middleweight contender Alan Belcher. Following Belfort’s removal from the card Belcher withdrew from the event due to a lingering spinal injury before a replacement opponent could be found. With both fighters out of the co-main event, the midway bout pitting former Light Heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson against potential contender Glover Teixeira.
On September 11 following the conference call for UFC 152, UFC President Dana White announced via Twitter that Jackson had withdrawn from UFC 153 after suffering an elbow injury, and the next hour announced that Aldo had also withdrawn from the card due to a foot injury believed to have been caused by a motorcycle accident that he was involved in less than two weeks prior. With Aldo and Jackson removed from the event, both headlining bouts were in jeopardy.
On September 12 the next day the first news to come out was the announcement that former 3x Heavyweight champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira was make his return to the octagon 10 months away from action to take on veteran Heavyweight Dave Herman in the new co-main event. Later that day it was announced that Glover Teixeira would remain on the card now demoted to fourth bout on the main card taking on fellow Brazilian Fabio Maldonado who offered to step in as a replacement for Jackson, and also announced was the new main event now pitting longtime Middleweight champion Anderson Silva in a Light Heavyweight bout against TUF1 finalist Stephan Bonnar. Deciding to possibly reset Edgar against Aldo early next year the UFC pulled him from the card.
Originally offering to save UFC 151 fighting at Light Heavyweight after hearing Jon Jones turned down a fight with Chael Sonnen, Anderson Silva had called just after plans were in motion and the event was already cancelled. With UFC 153 being the last event in Brazil for the remainder of the year and it being in freefall, Silva offered again to fight on a few weeks’ notice at Light Heavyweight. Hearing that Silva was stepping up to fight at Light Heavyweight, Stephan Bonnar took the opportunity to volunteer wanting to fight him feeling his style matched up well against him.
With a new and interesting main event headlining the card that will definitely attract attention, a co-main event that now features the return of a decorated and well known Brazilian Heavyweight legend, and a Light Heavyweight bout that has the makings of earning Fight of the Night honors, UFC 153 may not only be saved but still has the potential to become one of the best cards of the year.
As of now the main card for UFC 153 stands with six bouts lined up:
|Main Event/Non-Title Light Heavyweight bout||Anderson Silva
|Co-Main Event/ Heavyweight||Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira
|Light Heavyweight||Glover Teixeira
|Light Heavyweight||Phil Davis
Written by MMAFanHQ