UFC president Dana White announced this week that Thiago Silva has been cut from the promotion and will never return, after an incident involving Silva threatening his wife at gunpoint and a subsequent stand-off with police. Now, Silva’s opponent for UFC 171 – Ovince St. Preux – has a replacement fight with the 16-3 Nikita Krylov.
Krylov has spent his MMA career at heavyweight but came into his last fight with Walt Harris significantly lighter (218) than in his UFC debut, a disappointing performance against Soa Palelei. He came back in impressive fashion from the Palelei loss in which he gassed early and lost via third round TKO, defeating the much heavier man in Walter Harris just 25 seconds into the fight via head kick.
Shortly after the fight, ‘Al Capone’ announced to MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani that he was planning to move down to 205 and now, his debut in the division has been confirmed. The Ukrainian used Twitter as a way of persuading UFC matchmaker Joe Silva to let him fill in for Silva, and he now has his wish and will be fighting a tough guy in Ovince St. Preux.
— Nikita Krylov (@AlCaponeMMA) February 7, 2014
Ovince St. Preux is now 2-0 in the UFC after defeating Gian Villante in a bizarre refereeing display; Villante was accidentally poked in the eye, and the referee immediately waved the fight off without offering the Serra-Longo fighter time to recover. St. Preux was awarded a technical majority decision victory, but his second performance in the UFC was more decisive. He defeated Cody Donovan in impressive fashion, knocking the Colorado native out in the first round. Now, St. Preux is hoping to make it four wins in a row and go 3-0 in the UFC with a win over Nikita Krylov.
The fight will take place at UFC 171, which is set for the American Airlines Arena in Denver, CO. on 15 March. The card is headlined by a pivotal tilt between heavy hitters Robbie Lawler and Johny Hendricks for the vacant welterweight title.