Saturday’s UFC Vegas 65 card was expected to feature a heavyweight showdown between the hard-hitting Derrick Lewis, and rising Moldovan Serghei Spivac (Sergey Spivak).
The MMA Gods had other plans.
As the Fight Night card got underway at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas — a morning start, locally — rumors swirled that the main event match-up between Lewis and Spivac was off. Multiple sources later informed Cageside Press that the situation was being worked on, with an announcement soon to follow.
A short time later, the promotion officially revealed that the fight was off. During Saturday’s broadcast, a “non-COVID related illness” on the part of Derrick Lewis was cited as the culprit. No further update on the condition of Lewis was available.
The announcement came as the event had already seen five fights in the books.
Lewis had been in search of his first win of 2022, after dropping back-to-back bouts against Tai Tuivasa and Serghei Pavlovich earlier in the year. Though the Pavlovich finish was considered controversial, the end result was still an L on the Texas-based heavyweight’s record — and he made it clear earlier in the week that he did not want a third.
Spivac had been on the opposite trajectory, winning his last two, and five of his last six.
UFC Vegas 65 will now be headlined by the card’s original co-main event, featuring Ion Cutelaba and Kennedy Nzechukwu in a light heavyweight contest.