UFC 289: Julianna Peña to miss fight against Amanda Nunes with fractured rib, replaced by Irene Aldana
The third round of Peña-Nunes will have to wait
Julianna Peña won’t get a third bout with Amanda Nunes just yet.
Peña will miss the scheduled bout at UFC 289 due to a fractured rib, UFC president Dana White confirmed to Yahoo Sports' Kevin Iole on Tuesday. Irene Aldana is going to step in and take on Nunes with the bantamweight title on the line.
Breaking news………… pic.twitter.com/pNvr9Qo3I2
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It’s unclear how Peña fractured her rib, or how long she’ll be sidelined.
Aldana has won four of her past five fights, and most recently pulled out TKO wins over Yana Santos and Macey Chiasson in her last two bouts. The 35-year-old holds a 14-6 overall record. She was initially set to headline UFC Fight Night on May 20 against Raquel Pennington. It’s unclear who will replace her on that card.
"(Nunes versus Aldana) has a chance to be an incredible fight," White told Yahoo Sports. "She’s kind of been right there for the title for a while and with Julianna not being able to go, it made sense for Irene. And I love these kids who take a fight and step up like this because they believe in themselves."
Nunes hasn’t fought since she last beat Peña in July to reclaim the women’s bantamweight title via unanimous decision. That fight came about six months after Peña stunned Nunes with a second-round submission in their first battle at UFC 269. Nunes, 34, holds a 22-5 overall record and has won 13 of her past 14 fights dating back to 2015.
That fight is set for June 10 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, Canada.
White also announced that Bryce Mitchell will miss his fight with Movsar Evloev at UFC 288 on Saturday due to a back injury. Diego Lopez will instead take Mitchell’s place.