Image source: Robert Whittaker Instagram (@robwhittakermma)
A report from ESPN says that Whittaker was forced out of the bout with undisclosed personal issues. Currently the plan is to keep Cannonier on the card and match him up with another top contender although no replacement fighter has been found yet.
Whittaker would have been looking to rebound from losing his middleweight title to Israel Adesanya at UFC 243. Cannonier, however, is looking to keep his undefeated, 3-0 run at middleweight alive and emerge as the next contender for the title.
UFC 248 is still without a main event although there have been strong talks of booking Israel Adesanya vs Yoel Romero in the headlining spot. There is already a title fight booked for the PPV show as Weili Zhang vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk is currently listed as the co-main event.
Unfortunately for Cannonier, there aren’t many other options out there that would definitely launch him into the next title shot as number two ranked Paulo Costa is injured, number three ranked Yoel Romero may be fighting Adesanya for the title and Cannonier beat number four ranked Jack Hermansson in his last fight.