Yet another injury has struck the UFC 149 fight bill. UFC officials announced Tuesday that Canadian welterweight Claude Patrick has been forced to withdraw from a planned matchup with James Head at the July 21 event.
Stepping up to replace “The Prince” will be the man who handed Patrick his first loss since 2002, Brian Ebersole. According to the promotion, the fighters have verbally agreed to the contest, which takes place at Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta. UFC 149 marks the organization’s first trip to the Canadian city and will be headlined by an interim bantamweight title collision between former World Extreme Cagefighting featherweight king Urijah Faber and Renan Barao.
Head was welcomed rudely to the Octagon as a middleweight in his UFC debut last summer, submitting to Nick Ring at UFC 131. The Oklahoman responded to the defeat by cutting to welterweight for his sophomore promotional appearance and defeating Papy Abedi at UFC on Fuel TV 2. Head has stopped seven of his eight career victims and has yet to be knocked out in five years as a professional.
A veteran of 66 pro fights, Ebersole holds more than six times the in-cage experience of his opponent. The 31-year-old began his career in 2000 but did not make his UFC debut until last year, when he cruised to a unanimous decision over fellow vet Chris Lytle at UFC 127. Three more victories would follow for the “Bad Boy,” as he bested Dennis Hallman and Patrick before outpointing submission specialist T.J. Waldburger last month at UFC on FX 4.