The July 15 Fight Island date has been hit hard by COVID-19 positives, with a trio of fights in jeopardy as a result.
At least one appears to have been saved, however. First reported by MMA Junkie, former UFC fighter Aaron Phillips will make his return to the promotion after six years to take on Jack Shore. Shore was originally scheduled to face Brazil’s Anderson dos Santos, who was pulled from the card Friday after testing positive for COVID-19.
Phillips (13-3) had a two-fight stint in the UFC back in 2014. He’d lose those two bouts, against Sicilia and Matt Hobar, leading to his exit from the promotion. Prior to that, he had boasted an undefeated 7-0 record. After leaving the UFC, he took a third consecutive loss against Chris Gutierrez before embarking on a win streak of six straight victories that has culminated in his return to the company.
Gutierrez would later join the UFC, where he continues to fight today.
Jack Shore (12-0) is a former Cage Warriors bantamweight champion. He made his UFC debut last September at UFC Copenhagen, against Nohelin Hernandez. That submission win was Shore’s 11th stoppage in his twelve professional fights. Shore was expected to take part in March’s UFC London card. That card, however, was the first cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The UFC’s Fight Island debuts next weekend on July 11, with UFC 251. The promotion is holding four straight events there, on what is actually Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.