Daniel Cormier will now face former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva at UFC 200.
News broke last night that former light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones was pulled from his UFC 200 headliner bout against current champion Daniel Cormier after being flagged by USADA for a potential violation of the UFC Anti-Doping Policy. While several fighters immediately offered to fill in for Jones, the UFC ultimately announced Anderson Silva as Cormier’s new opponent on the Fight Night: Alvarez vs Dos Anjos broadcast Thursday night. The fight will be a three-round, non-title fight at 205 pounds.
Silva (33-7, 1 NC), who is 3-0 as a light-heavyweight, is coming off of a unanimous decision loss to current middleweight champion Michael Bisping at UFC Fight Night London earlier this year. Prior to that, the former pound-for-pound king beat Nick Diaz in his return to competition via decision that was eventually overturned after Silva tested positive for banned substances. Silva remains known as arguably the greatest mixed martial artist of all time and holds several UFC records including the most consecutive title defenses at ten straight.
Cormier (17-1) won the light-heavyweight belt last year when he submitted Anthony Johnson in the third round of their fight for the vacant belt. Prior to that, Cormier suffered his first professional loss to Jon Jones at UFC 182. He has made one successful title defense which came against Alexander Gustafsson.
UFC 200 will be headlined by a heavyweight bout between #8 ranked Mark Hunt and WWE superstar Brock Lesnar. The event is set to take place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on July 9.