UFC Fight Night 118 has been beset by injuries and pullouts, but thankfully for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, they have roster fighters like Sam Alvey.
On Wednesday, the UFC announced that middleweight Trevor Smith had pulled out of his slated bout with Ramazan Emeev for undisclosed reasons and would be replaced by “Smile’n Sam” on the bill. UFC Fight Night 118 is scheduled for Oct. 21 at the Ergo Arena in Gdansk, Poland.
Emeev, 30, rose to prominence in M-1 Challenge via his gruelling two-fight series with Vyacheslav Vasilevsky. Emeev lost his M-1 Challenge middleweight crown in September 2014 when he was punched out in the fourth round by Vasilevsky, but avenged the defeat and recaptured his crown in April 2015, choking the Bellator MMA veteran out just 98 seconds. Since the Vasilevsky defeat, the Azerbaijan native has gone 4-0, including stoppage wins over UFC veterans Luigi Fioravanti and Maiquel Falcao. Most recently, Emeev earned a three-round majority decision over Anatoly Tokov last December.
The 31-year-old Alvey is one of the UFC’s most active roster fighters, middleweight or otherwise. The Team Quest Temecula rep has gone 5-2 in the last 16 months alone, a span that includes wins over Eric Spicely, Nate Marquardt and most recently, former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans in August.
UFC Fight Night 118 is headlined by a welterweight clash between “Cowboy” Donald Cerrone and Darren Till. The promotion’s second-ever card in Polska, the event airs live in its entirety on UFC Fight Pass.