Robert Whittaker pulls out of UFC 234 main event due to hernia

Robert Whittaker pulls out of UFC 234 main event due to hernia

Evidently, Whittaker began complaining of pain in his abdomen during the middle of the night and was taken to the hospital.

It means the no less anticipated co-main event between Israel "The Last Stylebender" Adesanya and Brazilian legend Anderson Silva will top proceedings Down Under.

The news, in which Whittaker reportedly suffered a hernia, initially came via ESPN's Brett Okamoto.

ESPN's Ariel Helwani does not paint a pretty picture of what occurred that night, with Whittaker now in surgery.

It's obviously a huge blow to Whittaker, 28, who was forced to pull out of a title defense on home soil in February 2018.

Kiwi Israel Adesanya will now be headlining UFC 234 in Melbourne on Sunday against Anderson Silva.

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The lack of big fights has prevented Whittaker to find the amount of recognition that some of the other champions enjoy but that does not make him any less risky.

This is the second time Whittaker has been forced to withdraw from a scheduled title fight down under, after a range of injuries kept him from fighting Luke Rockhold at UFC 221 in Perth previous year.

The UFC 234 weigh-ins took place today and the fighters met face-to-face for the last time.

Whittaker praised Gastelum as a challenger and even called him "one of the most risky fighters to date".

With next to no time to find a replacement for Whittaker all the way out in Australia, UFC 234 turned to its old superstar in Silva to headline the event. Now, Adesanya gets the biggest fight of his career thanks to a UFC card being suddenly Whittaker-less again.

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