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Chris Weidman sends classy message to injured Luke Rockhold after UFC 230 withdrawal



Chris Weidman may have a heightened competitive intensity with Luke Rockhold inside the octagon, but it’s clear he doesn’t want to see anything bad happening to his fellow former UFC champion outside the cage.

The MMA world was struck with disappointment on Friday when news broke that Rockhold (16-4 MMA, 6-3 UFC) had been forced to withdraw from his scheduled UFC 230 rematch with Weidman (14-3 MMA, 10-3 UFC) due to a plethora of injuries.

According to a report from, Rockhold’s issues range from an infected shin to a sprained knee to a broken nose. He couldn’t endure it any longer and decided to pull out of the fight, marking the second time his rematch with Weidman has been called off.

Weidman, 34, was naturally disappointed he won’t get the chance to fight the man who took the 185-pound belt from him at UFC 194 in December 2015. However, in the wake of the situation, he showed nothing but class (via Twitter):

I was really looking forward to fighting Luke in this rematch but unfortunately it wasn’t in the cards this time around. This is a tough sport. I’m hoping and praying Luke makes a quick recovery and returns to good health.

UFC 230 takes place Nov. 3 at Madison Square Garden in New York. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on FS1 and UFC Fight Pass.

The injury to Rockhold, No. 4 in the latest USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA middleweight rankings, marked the second time a rematch with No. 5-ranked Weidman has not come to fruition. After taking the belt from Weidman with a third-round TKO at UFC 194, the pair was scheduled to run it back at UFC 199 in June 2016. Weidman was forced to withdraw due to injury, and Rockhold went on to drop the belt to late replacement Michael Bisping.

With Rockhold, 34, unable to compete at the event, Ronaldo Souza (25-6 MMA, 8-3 UFC) was inserted into the co-main event bout against Weidman.

For more on UFC 230, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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