Barely an hour after news broke that UFC Vegas 33 had lost its co-main event, the card appeared to be down another fight — though it appears the bout is now back on.
TSN’s Aaron Bronsteter was first to report that Niklas Stolze vs. Jared Gooden had been removed from the event. Though no reason was given for the fight being pulled at such short notice, an accompanying UFC bout sheet showed that Stolze vs. Gooden has indeed been removed.
Later Saturday afternoon, ESPN then broke the news that the fight was back on. COVID-19 protocols were to blame for the initial cancellation. According to that report, citing UFC officials, neither fighter had tested positive for the novel coronavirus, and doctor’s cleared both men.
Since Friday morning’s official weigh-in, UFC Vegas 33 had at least briefly lost a full four fights: Ronnie Lawrence vs. Trevin Jones, Nicco Montano vs. Wu Yanan, Rani Yahya vs. Kyung Ho Kang, and Niklas Stolze vs. Jared Gooden. Of course, Stolze vs. Gooden is now back on again.
The ESPN card (UFC on ESN 28, for those keeping track) has been plagued by bout cancellations, losing Sam Alvey vs. Roman Kopylov, Chris Daukaus vs. Shamil Abdurakimov, and other bouts in the days leading up to Fight Week.
As is stands, the UFC Vegas 33 line-up will move forward with ten fights. The women’s strawweight scrap between Cheyanne Buys and Gloria de Paula is currently penciled in as the card’s co-main event. Middleweights Uriah Hall and Sean Strickland, meanwhile, are still set to headline the event.
UFC Vegas 33’s current card looks as follows:
Uriah Hall vs. Sean Strickland – middleweight main event
Cheyanne Buys vs. Gloria de Paula
Niklas Stolze vs. Jared Gooden
Bryan Barberena vs. Jason Witt
Melsik Baghdasaryan vs. Collin Anglin
Chris Gruetzemacher vs. Rafa Garcia
Danny Chavez vs. Kai Kamaka III
Jinh Yu Frey vs. Ashley Yoder
Zarrukh Adashev vs. Ryan Benoit
Philip Rowe vs. Orion Cosce
Story updated at 4:30PM ET to reflect Stolze vs. Gooden being on again