John Lineker can’t catch a break. Originally scheduled to take on former champion Dominick Cruz at UFC Brooklyn, ‘Hands of Stone’ found himself without an opponent when the ‘Dominator’ was forced to pull out of their bout due to an injury suffered in training. Cory Sandhagen stepped up on short notice to take, Cruz’s spot, however Ag Fight reports that now Lineker has been forced out of the event with a rib injury.
On top of this news, ESPN’s Ariel Helwani reports that light heavyweight Ion Cutelaba, who was scheduled to face Glover Teixeira at the same event, has also been forced out of their fight with an undisclosed injury. The UFC is reportedly looking for late notice replacements for both bouts.
Both John Lineker and Ion Cutelaba are out of their respective fights next weekend versus Cory Sandhagen and Glover Teixeira in Brooklyn, sources say. UFC looking for replacements but obviously time is of the essence with the card nine days away.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) January 10, 2019
Currently on a two-fight winning streak, John Lineker (31-8) scored a knockout win over Brian Kelleher in May 2018 and a unanimous decision victory against Marlon Vera before that. The 28-year-old’s last loss came in December 2016, when he was bested via unanimous decision by current champion, T.J. Dillashaw.
Ion Cutelaba (14-3-1 NC) was looking for his third straight win in the Octagon after knocking out Gadzhimurad Antigulov and Henrique da Silva in his last couple of outings. His latest loss also occurred in December of 2016, when Jared Cannonier bested him via unanimous decision.
Lineker and Cutelaba were expected to fight at UFC on ESPN+1, in Brooklyn, New York, on January 19. The card will be headlined by a ‘superfight’ between flyweight champion, Henry Cejudo, and the bantamweight title holder, T.J. Dillashaw. No word yet on who their replacements might be, or if the UFC will be able to keep their opponents on the card.