Injury-hit Cejudo withdraws from Vera clash

Henry Cejudo won't be able to compete after sustaining an injury
Henry Cejudo won’t be able to compete after sustaining an injury

American mixed martial artist Henry Cejudo. ” by MMAnytt is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 .

The UFC 292 bout between Henry Cejudo and Marlon Vera is off after the American revealed he’s suffered a shoulder injury.

The two were set for a much-anticipated clash at TD Garden in Boston in August, but Cejudo took to Instagram to deliver the bad news. “I don’t want [the shoulder] to tear further than what it already is,” he explained. “There’s a tear in there guys. The cat’s out of the bag. It is actually a 50 per cent tear.”

For his part, Vera has responded only very briefly, posting a short video on Twitter in which he simply said: “Well… f***!” It didn’t take him long to recover from the news though. Shortly after, he was on Twitter again, calling on Russian fighter Petr Yan to “step up” and take Cejudo’s place.

Cejudo’s history of injury woes

It’s expected that Cejudo will be out of action for around six to eight weeks while he undergoes rehab. Though he’s still intent on a fight with Vera, it’s thought he’s likely to be seeking a clash with Georgian Bantamweight Merab Dvalishvili or Brandon Moreno, who’s the current flyweight champion once he’s recovered.

It’s a case of history repeating for Cejudo, who has suffered injury problems before, with his left shoulder previously causing him issues. 

However, the most surprising moment of his career came after a May 2020 fight with Dominick Cruz at UFC 249.

Despite winning the fight in the second round through a technical knockout, he took the opportunity to announce his retirement from fighting. Many were sceptical about the revelation, with some arguing that it was Cejudo’s way of negotiating a better contract, but he stuck to his word and was away from the sport for three years.

He only returned to the ring in May this year, when he lost on a split decision to Aljamain Sterling.

Prior to that, he’d been on a six-fight winning streak that lasted from September 2017 to May 2020. It was an impressive return to form after a run of double defeats (to Joseph Benavidez and Demetrious Johnson) that mark his only other two losses in the sport.

What next for UFC 292 and Vera?

The UFC 292 card is led by Aljamain Sterling and Sean O’Malley, who’ll be battling for the bantamweight title, and Zhang Weili and Amanda Lemos, who’ll fight for the strawweight title.

It’s not currently known if a new opponent will be found for Vera and if he’ll be able to remain on the card.

If he does have to depart the event, it’d be a frustrating turn of events for the Ecuadorian, who’s looking to bounce back after defeat to Cory Sandhagen on a split decision in March this year.

That defeat came at the end of a tremendous run of form throughout 2021 and 2022 when he won four fights in a row, two by knock-out. These bouts were given either Fight of the Night or Performance of the Night, with Vera standing out against the rest of the card.

He’s currently ranked sixth in the UFC bantamweight rankings and qualified for the series after appearing in the first season of the reality show The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America in 2014.

Written and distributed by Chat T Sports.

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