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Daniel Cormier will now face Anderson Silva tomorrow night at UFC 200

The UFC’s former middleweight champion has stepped in at the last minute for a light-heavyweight bout.

cormier-vs-sil-ufc-200 Source: UFC

HIS TITLE WON’T be on the line, but Daniel Cormier will be fighting at UFC 200 after all.

In a three-round non-title bout, Cormier will face Anderson Silva tomorrow night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Silva steps in to take on the UFC light-heavyweight champion following the enforced withdrawal of Cormier’s original opponent, Jon Jones, who has been flagged for a potential anti-doping violation.

News of Jones’ removal from the card broke in the early hours of yesterday morning. UFC president Dana White has revealed that a number of fighters — including Gegard Mousasi and Dan Henderson — were in the mix to be a replacement opponent for Cormier, but that role will now be filled by Anderson Silva.

The UFC’s former middleweight champion contacted the organisation to declare his availability and he arrived in Las Vegas last night ahead of tonight’s weigh-ins, when he’ll be tipping the scales at a maximum of 206lbs for the first time since his October 2012 stoppage of Stephan Bonnar — which remains Silva’s most recent victory.

UFC Fight Night 84 - 02 Arena Anderson Silva's last outing was a unanimous-decision defeat to Michael Bisping back in February. Source: Adam Davy

“If I was worried, I wouldn’t be here tonight,” the 41-year-old Brazilian told the press in Las Vegas following his arrival. “A fight is a fight and I’ve gone through a lot of bad things in my fights in the UFC, so anything can happen, but I’m prepared.”

The UFC has confirmed that the women’s bantamweight title bout between champion Miesha Tate and challenger Amanda Nunes will be the new main event for UFC 200, with the Mark Hunt-Brock Lesnar heavyweight clash slotting in as the co-headliner, preceded on the main card by Cormier-Silva, Aldo-Edgar and Velasquez-Browne.

“I am honoured to share the octagon with the one of the greatest fighters of all time,” Cormier said in a statement released to MMAFighting.com.

“This is a very tough fight for me, and I have to fight smart and to do my best in order to win this fight. Thank you Anderson for stepping up, and thanks to Dana White and the UFC for making this happen. Now let’s go do this.”

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Paul Dollery

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