Robert Whittaker On Being Left In “Limbo” Following Fight Cancellation

Former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker is not able to get any answers about what could be next for him from the UFC.

Robert Whittaker
Image via @ufc youtube

Robert Whittaker is being kept in the dark when it comes to plans for his next fight. 

The UFC middleweight division seems to be rolling on without former champion Robert Whittaker. The upcoming event to be held in Perth, Australia was supposed to be a huge homecoming for the Aussie, but unfortunately, the bout he had scheduled for that card fell through. This is the first time the UFC will be heading down under since before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and the plan was to bring all the local fighters to the event. 

Whittaker was scheduled to face Paulo Costa in the co-main event of that card, but due to negotiation problems with the UFC Paulo pulled out. Now Whittaker is left asking what is next and is receiving no answers. 

Robert Whittaker has no indications from the UFC as to when he will be back in the cage

Whittaker is the number two ranked middleweight in the UFC. He is a former champion and has only lost to Israel Adesanya over the past eight years. When Adesanya lost to Alex Pereira, it seemed like that could have been the opening that Whittaker had been waiting for to jump back into a title shot. He had the bout with Costa that could have been a number-one contender fight but now without that, he is without direction. He spoke to Michael Bisping on his podcast about his current situation. 

“I’m upset because whenever a fight falls through that means you’re not getting paid for a little bit longer as well as all the work that you’ve put in the bank up until that point it’s kind of for naught and then the just the fact that the fight didn’t go through and I wasn’t given any other timeline. I’ve been in limbo, no man’s land,” he said. 

Whittaker is unsure if he will have the fight against Costa rebooked or if the UFC will simply move on and have him fight someone else. He was holding out hope for a title shot after the UFC failed to get him a replacement opponent for UFC 284, but now with a rematch booked between Adesanya and Pereira, he seems to be the odd man out. 

“Your guess is as good as mine because you have to think if the UFC wanted me to fight someone, like really wanted me to get on that card and fight someone they could have,” he explained. “They got Sean Strickland in after a moment’s notice for the first card of the year, so they could have made that fight happen. They obviously have other designs and plans for me. I was thinking Pereira perhaps because the timelines and the way things worked out. But then Adesanya/Pereira got announced for April. So honestly, your guess is as good as mine.”

During the conversation, Bisping hinted at having some inside information regarding what the UFC wanted to do next but would not share his secret with Whittaker on camera. 

Published on February 3, 2023 at 9:37 am
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