Mairbek Taisumov has been dealing with some visa issues and has reportedly been pulled from UFC 223, where he was set to fight Evan Dunham in a preliminary card fight.
It was Taisumov who made the announcement via Instagram:
Disappointing news - My visa application for the USA is taking longer than my team and the UFC expected. The visa process is still ongoing albeit at a slower pace than anticipated. I am hoping that Sean Shelby will be able to find me a fight in Rio on May 12th and I hope to fight in the USA shortly. Thanks to Evan Dunham who accepted to fight me unlike many others from the Top 15. Wish you a good fight in Brooklyn and I'm ready to give you a fight either in Rio or once my visa run is done. #taisumov #berkut #berkutmma #ufc223
Allegedly replacing Taisumov against Dunham is going to be Olivier Aubin-Mercier.
An announcement was made by Dunham on Twitter about the new opponent, which also led to a response from Aubin-Mercier:
It will be a honor to see you in the middle— Olivier Aubin (@oliaubin) March 10, 2018
Dunham (18-6-1) has won four of his last five under the UFC banner, but is coming off of a draw against Beneil Dariush at UFC 216. Dunham hasn’t suffered a defeat in over three years and that last loss came to Edson Barboza at UFC Fight Night 45. Dunham has earned his last four wins by way of decision and it has been over six years since the fight earned a victory via finish.
Aubin-Mercier (10-2-0) enters the fight on the strength of a three bout winning streak, last defeating Tony Martin at UFC Fight Night Pittsburgh. Aubin-Mercier has only suffered two defeats as a pro MMA fighter, with those defeats coming to Chad Laprise and Carlos Diego Ferreira. Aubin-Mercier made it to the finals of the UFC Ultimate Fighter Nations, losing to Chad Laprise in those finals.
UFC 223 takes place on Saturday, April 7 from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada with Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, with a post-show podcast to follow.