Marlon Vera lost a Cejudo match up, but won bigger at UFC 292

Marlon Vera almost had a very different night at UFC 292.

By: Jack Wannan | 1 month ago

Pedro Munhoz only got a shot at Chito when Cejudo dropped out

Tonight’s Marlon Vera vs Pedro Munhoz fight only happened because former 2 division UFC champ Henry Cejudo couldn’t make the booking. After his win, he likely gets the next title shot.

Here’s our original report on why Henry Cejudo didn’t fight at UFC 292.

MMA: UFC 292 - Vera vs Munhoz Aug 19, 2023 Boston, MA, USA Marlon Vera red gloves fights Pedro Munhoz blue gloves during UFC 292 at TD Garden. Boston TD Garden MA USA, EDITORIAL USE ONLY PUBLICATIONxINxGERxSUIxAUTxONLY Copyright: xBobxDeChiarax 20230819_szo_om2_0127
IMAGO | USA TODAY by Bob DeChiara

The return of former UFC Flyweight and Bantamweight Champion Henry Cejudo has been put on hold. The 36-year-old announced Thursday that an injury has removed him from UFC 292, the PPV event scheduled to go down on August 19 from the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.

Cejudo was set to face ranked bantamweight Marlon Vera, a surprisingly quick turnaround from an unsuccessful title shot earlier this year that seemed to have the Fight Ready athlete considering retirement again. Perhaps that extra jump-start of motivation was a reaction to his defeat at the hands of Aljamain Sterling, his first loss since 2016.

Henry Cejudo reveals shoulder injury

Cejudo took to social media to announce that a tear in his right shoulder has forced him out of his UFC 292 fight in just a little more than a month’s time.

“August 19th is the 15 year anniversary of when Triple C won his Olympic gold medal. And August 19th [I] was also scheduled to fight Chito Vera,” Cejudo started his video by saying. “Guys, but I’m here to make an announcement that, unfortunately due to my right shoulder [being torn], I won’t be able to fight.”

The news of Cejudo’s injury rings very similar to June 2019, when he had to undergo surgery on his other shoulder while champion. In that instance, it was expected that ‘Triple C’ would miss the rest of the year due to the surgery.

This time around, Cejudo is hoping that six-to-eight weeks will be enough for him to heal up. He said his injury is a “50 percent” tear, and that he is pulling from his upcoming booking so as to avoid exacerbating the circumstances.

“I don’t want to tear it further than it already is. I mean, there’s a tear in there, guys. The cat’s out the bag,” Cejudo said in his recent video.

Cejudo looking for first win since 2020

Cejudo made his return from retirement last month, attempting to re-gain champion status against current UFC Bantamweight titleholder Aljamain Sterling. He was unsuccessful in his title fight, losing a tight split decision to the incumbent champ at UFC 288.

That appearance was his first fight in over three years. He previously retired on top, vacating his bantamweight title in May of 2020 after scoring a fast victory over Dominick Cruz. The victory over Cruz his sixth consecutive win, with four of those fights being down at flyweight.

Plans for Vera unknown

It is not known if Vera will get a new opponent for UFC 292. The promotion, if they attempt to find him a new fight, are tasked with getting a name who can face a ranked competitor on just a few week’s notice.

Similar to Cejudo, Vera was hoping this booking could get him back to his winning ways. Vera is coming off a five-round split decision loss against Cory Sandhagen from March. That Fight Night main event put an end to a fair amount of momentum that he gained at bantamweight, stringing together four wins since early 2021.

UFC 292 still expected to be big bantamweight card

With or without Vera, UFC 292 is expected to be a big night for the bantamweight division. UFC Bantamweight Champion Aljamain Sterling is expected to get somewhat of a quick turnaround on that date, putting up his belt against flashy talent Sean O’Malley. Bantamweight will still be represented lower on the card as well, as names like Song Yadong, Rob Font, and Cody Garbrandt are expected to compete.

Also, the show will have a strawweight title bout between Zhang Weili and Amanda Lemos. It will be Zhang’s first appearance since beginning her second title reign in November of last year.

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About the author
Jack Wannan
Jack Wannan

Jack Wannan is a reporter for Bloody Elbow. He joined the site in 2023 after previously writing for and Knockdown News. He is currently in the process of earning a bachelor's degree in journalism at Toronto Metropolitan University.

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