UFC President Dana White has revealed some troubling details about the status of middleweight champion Robert Whittaker.
Whittaker (19-4 MMA, 10-2 UFC) had been scheduled for a title defense against Luke Rockhold (16-3 MMA, 6-2 UFC) at UFC 221 before he was forced to withdraw from what was described as multiple injuries. Yoel Romero (12-2 MMA, 8-1 UFC) stepped in and will fight Rockhold for the interim belt at the Feb. 21 event, but outside of that news, there was little known about the status of “The Reaper.”
According to White, who spoke to TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter following Saturday’s UFC 220 event at TD Garden in Boston, Whittaker was dealing with a staph infection in his stomach that did not receive proper treatment. As a result, the 185-pound champ apparently is in serious condition.
“He had staph infection in his stomach,” White said. “From what I understand it wasn’t treated properly and started to eat away at parts of his organs. He’s in serious condition, so it’s going to be a minute before he’s back, I think. Hopefully it turns around quick, but that stuff is life threatening if not treated the right way.”
Whittaker was set to get his first title defense on home soil at UFC 221, which takes place at Perth Arena in Perth, Australia, but now his future is unknown.
- David Branch reacts to losing Yoel Romero as opponent at UFC on FOX 28
- Robert Whittaker out of UFC 221; Yoel Romero to fight Luke Rockhold for interim belt
- Grade the 'UFC 221: Whittaker vs. Rockhold' poster
Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
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