Gunnar Nelson has apparently suffered a huge setback in his quest to return to UFC title contention.
The popular welterweight has defeated the likes of Brandon Thatch, Albert Tumenov and Alan Jouban on the way to prominence at 170 pounds, but defeats to Demian Maia, and most recently Santiago Ponzinibbio in July of last year, have stalled his momentum.
An opportunity for redemption presented itself in some style when he was matched with Neil Magny for UFC Fight Night 130 in Liverpool on May 27.
Magny has defeated former champions in recent years, and is ranked ninth in the division – three places above Nelson.
It has emerged however that Nelson has pulled out of the fight due to injury.
Reports this morning originating from TheMMATakeover claimed that this was the case, and have now been followed up by Pétur Marinó Jónsson of MMAFrettir, a well-connected MMA website in Nelson’s native Iceland.
“Gunnar needs to take action and need to take a few weeks break from exercises after surgery. It is expected that he will start training again in the summer if everything is done”, he writes.
Such action being taken over what is claimed to be a knee injury would keep the 29-year-old on the shelf for months beyond the UFC Liverpool fight card. Pending an official announcement from the UFC, no replacement has yet been found to step in and face Neil Magny.
The event is currently headlined by two top welterweight contenders, as #1 ranked Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson takes on hometown hero Darren Till.