Multiple-time IBJJF World Champion and currently undefeated MMA fighter Rodolfo Vieira has been forced out of his upcoming fight against Markus Perez at UFC Fight Island due to a rib injury. The news originally began to circulate on Twitter thanks to journalists working for Combate, before eventually being confirmed by MMA Fighting. They managed to speak to Vieira who revealed that he was no longer able to continue training for the fight and due to the difficulty in such a late stage of his preparations, he had no choice but to withdraw.
The UFC is currently looking for a replacement for Vieira but has yet to be able to secure anyone. It seems as though Perez has taken matters into his own hands as he’s begun to lobby for a fight with the recently promoted BJJ blue belt, Khamzat Chimaev. He’s coming off a stunning first-round knockout win over Gerald Meerschaert at UFC Vegas 11, his third consecutive UFC win in just a little over two months. UFC brass have reportedly denied the request however, which makes sense considering there was talk of Chimaev’s fourth fight for the promotion being against the legendary BJJ black belt Demian Maia instead.
With the fight originally scheduled for October 10th, the UFC is rapidly running out of time to find a late-replacement for Perez to stay on the card. Despite withdrawing due to injury, the career trajectory of Rodolfo Vieira is firmly positioned upwards as he’s finished all seven of his opponents so far. With six out of seven fights ending by submission and five of those victories coming in the first round, Vieira has been carrying the flag as the next generation to represent elite BJJ in the UFC.