Marcus Aurelio. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Former PRIDE lightweight standout Marcus Aurelio will reportedly replace injured teammate Gleison Tibau and take on former student Hermes Franca at UFC 90 on October 25 according to a report from Sherdog.com.
Tibau was said to have suffered a shoulder injury during a recent training session. Aurelio served as one of Franca’s coaches at Florida-based American Top Team before Franca left the camp a couple of years ago. However he maintains that the relationship they have still allows them to fight without worry.
“It doesn’t matter who I fight; it’s a big challenge,” Franca said in the report. “It is what it is. We’re both professionals. I think it’s better for me. I know his game really well. I’ve never trained with Gleison before. When you lose fights, it sucks. It’s going to be a good fight. I want to win and give people what they want to see.”
With the UFC now frequently dropping fighters that have lost two or three bouts in a row, the bout has turned in to a must-win situation for both Aurelio and Franca.
After overcoming an upset loss to Clay Guida by winning two straight fights, Aurelio spoiled a chance to move up the lightweight ladder by dropping a decision to Tyson Griffin at UFC 86. Franca’s return to the UFC after a one-year suspension for steroids use was underwhelming as the Brazilian was easily defeated by Frankie Edgar at UFC Fight Night 14 on July 19.
The bout is currently slated to be one of UFC 90’s non-televised preliminary fights. The UFC is expected to officially announce the change at some point this week.
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