Last night following UFC 146: Dos Santos vs. Mir, UFC president Dana White revealed to reporters in a media scrum that Vitor Belfort has broken his hand and been forced out of his planned UFC 147 bout with Wanderlei Silva.
White said that he found out yesterday that Belfort was in surgery to repair the injury. He also assured that Silva will remain in the UFC 147 main event, taking on a replacement opponent that the promotion either hasn’t found or hasn’t announced yet.
UFC 147 is scheduled to take place on June 23 at the “Mineirinho” arena (Estadio Jornalista Felipe Drumond) in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. Silva and Belfort served as coaches on the first season of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil and were expected to headline the card in a coaches battle.
With Dominick Cruz injured and out of his TUF coaches bout/title fight with Urijah Faber, this is the second such fight that has been cancelled recently.
It’s also not the first hit that the UFC 147 fight card has taken. Originally, UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva was expected to take on Chael Sonnen in a highly anticipated rematch on the card, which was also initially scheduled for an even larger stadium in Rio de Janeiro. That match was bumped up to UFC 148 in Las Vegas for various reasons — including the United Nations’ Rio+20 conference — effectively cancelling what would have been one of the promotion’s biggest events ever.