Ultimate Fighting Championship officials, following the UFC 151 cancellation, have moved swiftly to find new homes for many of next week’s scheduled bouts, but also had to deal with a fight change due to a positive circumstance.
Amidst all the reshuffling, UFC welterweight Dan Miller had to withdraw from the UFC 152 fight card slated of Sept. 22 in Toronto due to his son finally being granted a badly needed kidney transplant surgery.
That left Sean Pierson without an opponent, but that designation didn’t last long. UFC officials on Friday, less than 12 hours after announcing Miller’s withdrawal, revealed that Lance Benoist has agreed to step in to fight Pierson.
Pierson (12-6) saved his UFC tenure by defeating Jake Hecht at UFC on FX 3 in June. That marked Pierson’s first victory since losing back-to-back bouts to Jake Ellenberger and Dong Hyun Kim.
Fighting in his home city of Toronto, Pierson now takes on Benoist (6-1), who saw his undefeated professional record come to an end at the same UFC on FX 3 show where Pierson got back on track. Benoist lost a narrow split decision to Seth Baczynski.
Surely no one will be upset that a change had to come, however, as some things are bigger than sport, and Danny Miller Jr. is one of them. Coined the “toughest Miller” of the bunch by his uncle, UFC lightweight Jim Miller, Danny has battled polycystic kidney disease (PKD) since birth.
The surgery will hopefully alleviate much of the treatments that Danny has had to undergo, which has included undergoing dialysis treatments several times a week since the initial diagnosis.
The surgery is quite expensive, in the six figures range, and Danny will need ongoing medications that are expected to run into the thousands of dollars each month for at least the first year following the surgery.