Alessio Di Chirico has pulled out of his bout with Rafael Natal at UFC on FOX 25 in Long Island. In his place will be LFA 185-lb Champion; Eryk “Frankenstein” Anders.
The bout was confirmed by MMA Junkie on Thursday.
LFA Middleweight Champion makes short-notice UFC debut in Long Island
Eryk Anders vs. Rafael Natal
Anders (8-0) is a former football player who has made his presence known on the regional MMA scene as a powerhouse. Anders won the Inaugural LFA Middleweight Championship last month after thoroughly dominating Brendan Allen for 25 minutes. Along with his 2-0 LFA run, Anders also has one Bellator MMA fight, viciously knocking out Brian White in 23-seconds at Bellator 162.
Natal (21-8-1) debuted in the UFC in 2010 with a record of 12-2. He has been with the promotion ever since. From 2014 – 2016, Natal went on the best run of his UFC career, winning four-straight. He has now not won since January 2016. Robert Whittaker ended his solid run at UFC 197, and Tim Boetsch picked up a first-round (T)KO win against the Brazilian at UFC 205. He hopes to not make it 0-3 in his last three when he meets Anders in Long Island.
UFC on FOX 25 is set to take place on July 22 at the Nassau Coliseum in Long Island, New York. The main event features former middleweight champion Chris Weidman looking to rebound from a three-fight (T)KO skid when he takes on surging 25-year-old Kelvin Gastelum. The co-main event sees TUF 14 finalist Dennis “The Menace” Bermudez return to take on the incredibly durable Darren “The Damage” Elkins in featherweight action.
The bout between Anders and Natal is expected to be a televised prelim.