With Jon Jones ruled out of his scheduled title bout with Stipe Miocic, Tom Aspinall will face Sergei Pavlovich for the interim UFC heavyweight championship on Saturday, November 11 at UFC 295 in New York City.
UFC president Dana White took to social media to announce the last-minute change to the card. UFC 295 was originally set to be headlined by Jones vs. Miocic for the UFC heavyweight title. However, White announced that, during a wrestling session, Jones tore off the bone the tendon that connects the pectoral muscle to the bone. He is now looking at approximately eight months on the sidelines, and requires surgery.
The light heavyweight title bout between former champion Jiri Prochazka and ex-middleweight champ Alex Pereira will now serve as the main event of UFC 295, with Pavlovich vs. Aspinall taking the co-main event slot.
Pavlovich is the number two ranked contender in the division. He boasts an impressive 18-1 record, with his only defeat coming against Alistair Overeem back in 2018. Since then, the Russian has picked up six wins on the bounce, all by way of first-round stoppage. Pavlovich now gets the chance to claim UFC gold on the card he was originally set to serve as a backup fighter.
Aspinall enters the contest as the number four ranked heavyweight in the UFC. With a 100 percent finishing rate and an impressive 13-3 record, he will look to make history on November 11 by becoming Britain’s first UFC heavyweight champion.
The co-main event is more than two years in the making, with the pair originally slated to face each other back in September 2021.
Taking to Instagram, Aspinall left a light-hearted message for his followers, explaining he will be stepping away from social media for the next couple of weeks. He said “Good morning everybody, yes the rumours are in fact true. I am fighting Sergei Pavlowich in 2 weeks time and obviously my phone is going absolutely insane right now. Questions, tickets, interviews, people want to know everything but I am going to be staying off social media. Quite frankly, I have 2 weeks to train for this sh*t and I am going to get myself as ready as possible and I don’t have time for social media right now.”
“So, appreciate all the support, sure there’s a lot of hate out there as well, love you too and I’ll probably see you on the other side cos I ain’t got time to reply to loads of messages- peace out!”
There has been no official reason given as to why Stipe Miocic will no longer feature on the card.
By Jake Smith