The upcoming main event at UFC Fight Night in Busan, South Korea, has taken a major hit after Brian Ortega suffered a knee injury that has forced him out of his fight against “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung.
According to Ortega, he suffered a partial tear of his ACL in training and while it isn’t serious enough to warrant reconstructive knee surgery, he will still be forced to the sidelines for two to three months to recover.
News of Ortega’s withdrawal was first reported by ESPN.
“I tore my ACL in training and I won’t be fighting in Korea,” Ortega wrote on Instagram. “Thankfully, it was only a partial tear so I’m already rehabbing it and the plan is to be back to 100 percent in 2-3 months. I didn’t want to let down the fans, the Zombie and the UFC, so I strongly considered pushing through it and fighting anyways but according to doctors, the risk of a full rupture in the fight was high and that would put me out for up to a year.
“Sorry guys, I gotta take care of this right now but I’ll make it up to all of you [in] 2020, I promise.”
Ortega being forced out of the main event means he will not compete at all in 2019 with his last fight coming against reigning UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway back in December 2018, which resulted in the first loss of his career.
With Ortega sidelined due to injury, the UFC has a few weeks to secure a new opponent to keep Jung on the card as he looks to headline the Busan event in his native South Korea.
As of now, UFC officials haven’t made any announcements regarding the fight or any potential replacements who could step in to face “The Korean Zombie” on Dec. 21.