Kelvin Gastelum out of UFC 273, releases statement

Former interim middleweight title challenger Kelvin Gastelum was forced to withdraw from the UFC 273 fight card and released a statement on Saturday via social media.

“I wish it was an April Fool’s joke,” said Gastelum. “I wish this didn’t happen, but it did, and unfortunately, I have to withdraw from the fight. 

“I was advised not to disclose the injury, but just know, I am compromised, and I can’t and won’t be heading into the fight compromised the way that I am.”

Gastelum was originally slated to face Nassourdine Imavov on the April 9 pay-per-view, but Imavov was forced out of the fight due to visa issues. Dricus Du Plessis replaced Imavov before Gastelum withdrew due to injury.

“You were our last hope to stay on the card, and I was so thankful that you accepted the fight,” Gastelum said addressing Du Plessis. “But I’m sorry.”

UFC 273 takes place at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Fla. and is headlined by a pair of world title bouts. Featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski puts his title on the line in the main event against ‘The Korean Zombie’ Chan Sung Jung. In the co-main event, bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling and former titleholder Petr Yan.

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