According to MMA Junkie writer Mike Bohn, surging welterweight challenger Santiago ‘Gente Boa’ Ponzinibbio has been forced from his UFC 245 showdown with former champion ‘Ruthless’ Robbie Lawler, after suffering a staph infection in preparation for the December date.
Argentine all-rounder Ponzinibbio has won his last seven straight, with injuries over the last year bringing a halt to his title siege since his knockout victory over Neil Magny last November. Lawler on the other hand, has lost his last three in a row, with Rafael dos Anjos, Ben Askren and most recently, Colby Covington sealed a UFC 245 title challenge against Kamaru Usman off the back of a dominant performance against Lawler.
The dangerous Ponzinibbio really built up his head of steam toward a championship opportunity two years ago, as he finished Gunnar Nelson in the opening round of their headliner, before finding a way past Mike Perry to book a clash with the aforementioned Usman. More injury woes for the Argentine forced him to withdraw from the meeting with the future champion and has been limited to just one more appearance in the last eleven months.
At this time, it is believed the promotion is exploring options and possible replacements which would keep former welterweight champion Lawler on the card.
Senior writer for FightBook MMA. An aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Producer of news articles, interviews, opinion features, and exclusive features such as, ‘The Fallout’, ‘The Breakdown, and, ‘This Week In MMA’.
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