UFC light heavyweight Steve Cantwell, who withdrew on Tuesday from a matchup with Vladimir Matyushenko slated for Saturday’s “UFC 108: Evans vs. Silva” event for undisclosed reasons, “may never fight again” UFC President Dana White said at Wednesday’s pre-UFC 108 press conference without offering details on his medical condition.
A search by the UFC to find a last-minute replacement to fight Matyushenko on the injury-plagued card turned up empty and the bout was officially scratched on Wednesday.
Cantwell (7-3) became the final WEC light heavyweight title-holder with his knockout of Brian Stann in August 2008, then won “Submission of the Night” honors in his UFC debut win over Razak Al-Hassan last December. “The Robot” has most-recently dropped back-to-back fights to Luiz Cane in April and Stann in September.
Matyushenko (23-4), the former IFL 205-pound champ, was knocked out by Antonio Rogerio Nogueira at a January Affliction event but has bounced back with wins over Jason Lambert in May and Igor Pokrajac in his return to the UFC in September.
Matyushenko will be re-scheduled to fight at one of the UFC’s other upcoming events.
UFC 108 is headlined by Rashad Evans vs. Thiago Silva and the main card also includes Paul Daley vs. Dustin Hazelett, Joe Lauzon vs. Sam Stout, Duane Ludwig vs. Jim Miller, and Junior Dos Santos vs. Gilbert Yvel, while the Spike TV-televised preliminary card features Martin Kampmann vs. Jacob Volkmann and Dan Lauzon vs. Cole Miller.