Canada’s Felicia Spencer will have to wait a little longer for her shot at Amanda Nunes’ 145lb title. That’s after the UFC’s double-champ, Nunes, revealed that she’s not stepping into the octagon as planned on May 9.
The news is not entirely surprising, but does come as yet another blow to the promotion’s plan to push onward during the coronavirus pandemic. On Monday, UFC officials announced the cancellation of four events, including UFC 250 on May 9 in Sao Paulo, which was originally expected to feature Nunes vs. Spencer as its co-main event.
However, the promotion is preparing a card for the same date stateside, at a location yet to be confirmed. Nunes vs. Spencer was likely to feature there — but “The Lioness” has pumped the brakes.
“Actually, I’m not fighting May 9,” Nunes told CBS Sports’ Brian Campbell on Monday. “I’m going to fight, [but] I don’t know yet. I don’t think this is the right time for me right now to fight. Let this coronavirus pass a little bit so I can at least have a full camp. We can maybe see around June, [but] let’s see what is going to happen. But I’m not fighting [May 9].”
Both fighters had previously agreed to remain in Florida, where they train, to avoid any travel restrictions getting in the way of the fight. But it appears Nunes has decided to err on the side of caution regardless.
Nunes (19-4) last competed at UFC 245 in December, defeating former featherweight champ Germaine de Randamie via unanimous decision, with the bantamweight title on the line. Nunes, who holds both 135lb and 145lb gold in the UFC, will defend her featherweight strap for the first time whenever she finally meets Spencer.
Spencer (8-1) punched her ticket to the title fight with a TKO win over Zarah Fairn Dos Santos at UFC Norfolk back in February. A former Invicta FC featherweight champion, her only career loss came against Cris Cyborg at UFC 240 in Edmonton last year. The fight went the distance, making Spencer one of the few fighters to have lasted all the way to the bell with the former Invicta FC, Strikeforce, UFC, and current Bellator MMA champion.