The UFC 265 co-main event with UFC women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes defending against Julianna Peña has been canceled after Nunes tested positive for COVID-19.
ESPN first reported on Nunes’ status. The promo will reschedule this fight ASAP. At the time of writing, there is no information on what will serve as the new co-main event for the card.
UFC 265 will take place on Saturday, August 7, 2021 from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. With this cancellation, here is the updated lineup for pay-per-view:
Interim Heavyweight Title Fight: Derrick Lewis vs. Ciryl Gane
José Aldo vs. Pedro Munhoz
Michael Chiesa vs. Vicente Luque
Casey Kenney vs. Song Yadong
Angela Hill vs. Tecia Torres
Rafael Fiziev vs. Bobby Green
Ed Herman vs. Alonzo Menifeld
Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs. Jessica Penne
Anderson dos Santos vs. Miles Johns
Manel Kape vs. Ode Osbourne
Melissa Gatto vs. Victoria Leonardo
Vince Morales vs. Drako Rodríguez
Johnny Muñoz vs. Jamey Simmons
[ORIGINAL FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENT, PUBLISHED APRIL 15, 2021, 6:31 PM]
Julianna Peña’s tireless lobbying has paid off, as “The Venezuelan Vixen” will challenge “The Lioness” Amanda Nunes for the bantamweight championship this summer.
ESPN broke the news on Thursday that Amanda Nunes’ first defense of the bantamweight title since 2019 will take place at UFC 265 when she defends the title against Julianna Peña. It is not yet known if this will be the main event of the card.
Julianna Peña has delivered what may be the most persistent and aggressive lobbying campaign for a title shot that the women’s bantamweight division has ever seen. Originally scheduled to fight Holly Holm in a possible title eliminator this year, Holm withdrew from the fight due to kidney inflammation. This left Peña free and hungry to finally share the octagon with champion Amanda Nunes.
After Holm pulled out of her scheduled fight in May, Peña made the media rounds to tell the world why she should be the next to fight Nunes and why it is the worst possible matchup for the dominant champion. More importantly, she annoyed Dana White on the issue to the point where she has officially broken his will, causing the boss to break down even though Nunes said she needed another win to be in contention for the title.
Amanda Nunes has yet to face any real danger since winning the bantamweight title from Miesha Tate at UFC 200. She has been nothing short of dominant, earning wins over names like Ronda Rousey, Valentina Shevchenko, Germaine de Randamie, not to mention her domain. in the featherweight division, starting with a surprise by Cris Cyborg at UFC 232. Nunes is now going to show that she is not a demanding double champion by dropping back down to bantamweight to clean up the house once more. In her path, the confident and defiant veteran named Julianna Peña stands in the way.
There is currently no venue or location set for UFC 265, nor have any other bouts been announced for the undercard.
Do you think this is a case of “be careful what you wish for?” Or will Julianna Peña silence critics with surprise at UFC 265?