Holloway, who was scheduled to fight Rodriguez in the main event of UFC Fight Night 191, is injured and out of the July 17 event, a source close to the situation confirmed to GIVEMESPORT on Thursday.
The promotion is reportedly looking for a replacement to fight Rodriguez, per ESPN.
Holloway (22-6), 29, of Honolulu, Hawaii, recently snapped a two-fight skid after coming up short against champion Alexander Volkanovski.
‘Blessed’ defeated Calvin Kattar by unanimous decision at UFC on ABC 1 at the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi in January. The victory kept Holloway at the top of the UFC’s featherweight contender rankings.
Fighting out of Huntington Beach, California, Rodriguez, who is a long-time training partner of Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone, hasn’t won a UFC fight for almost two years. The Mexican is coming off a lopsided decision win over Jeremy Stephens in the co-main event of UFC on ESPN 6 in October 2019.
The postponement is the latest misfortune to befall ‘Pantera’, who has missed out on two cancelled bouts with Zabit Magomedsharipov over the past couple of years.
Rodriguez sustained an ankle injury in sparring just three weeks before their first scheduled bout in August 2018, and was then suspended for six months by USADA following three whereabouts violations during a 12-month period.
In addition, it was reported that Rodríguez had been released by the UFC after allegedly turning down two fights with Magomedsharipov and Ricardo Lamas in 2018.
The news will be a bitter pill to swallow for UFC president Dana White, who had previously suggested that Holloway had done enough to deserve another title shot against Volkanovski following his five-round demolition of Kattar.
“I think we have to. I think we have to. I mean, when you’re the champion, you have the top five guys in the world gunning at you.
“When you’re the No. 1 contender in the world, you’ve got the top 10 guys in the world. Sometimes, No. 8 is more dangerous than No. 3.
“Tonight, he fought a bad dude that a lot of people thought was going to beat him. He went out and treated him like No. 6, so he did what he needed to do in spectacular fashion tonight.
“I think that he deserves to fight Volkanovski again.”