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Max Holloway to replace Tony Ferguson in UFC 223 fight

Khabib Nurmagomedov has a new opponent for the upcoming event.

TONY FERGUSON IS out of the headline fight at UFC 223 and will be replaced by Max Holloway.

Ferguson has pulled out from the event due to a torn knee ligament suffered in an accident on a studio set and tweeted confirmation of the news on Sunday.

The California-born fighter was due to take on Khabib Nurmagomedov in a lightweight title fight at UFC 223 in Brooklyn on 7 April.

However, featherweight champion Max Holloway has agreed to replace Ferguson at short notice for the headline fight.

“He’s a stud,” Dana White told ESPN, when asked about Holloway. “The guy hasn’t lost a fight since 2013, and that was a decision to Conor McGregor.

“He’s the type of guy that steps up for opportunities like this. And when you think about it, if he wins this fight, other than Conor McGregor, he will be the only guy to hold two belts at the same time.”

McGregor is the official UFC lightweight champion as it stands, after becoming a two-weight champion in his most recent MMA fight, though he is expected to lose the belt amid the culmination of the Nurmagomedov-Holloway fight.

The Irishman has not fought in UFC since November 2016 and White played down suggestions that his return was imminent.

“I don’t think Conor McGregor could make the weight on six days’ notice. That’s a tough weight cut for him,” he said. “And Conor is not the guy I want to throw in as a late replacement fighter. He’s a guy I want to make a fight with and have the right amount of time to promote the fight.

“I think Conor could return in September, and it could be against one of these guys.”

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