With Vitor Belfort being injured again and now out of UFC 122, Yushin Okami’s new opponent is Nate Marquardt. “The Great” was recently seen pummeling Rousimar Palhares en route to a first-round TKO victory at UFC Fight Night 22. After the win, Marquardt expressed his desire to get another fight before too long and now that wish will be fulfilled.
Belfort, who has yet to actually compete in the UFC’s middleweight division (during this current stint with the promotion), is seemingly a magnet for bad luck. He had to withdraw from a title fight with champ Anderson Silva earlier this year due to a nagging shoulder injury. After surgery and rehab, it seemed “The Phenom” was ready to step into the Octagon but this new, undisclosed injury has bumped him from a shot at 2010 glory as reported by MMAWeekly.com.
While the original promise of Belfort vs. Okami being a #1 contender fight and this new match up has yet to be confirmed with having the same, one would have to think the same implications are still in place. Both Nate and Yushin have battled back from upsetting losses to gain major momentum in the division and UFC 122 will serve as an exciting proving ground.
Update: UFC President Dana White says Vitor is not injured (source)