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Fedor's Bellator MMA debut postponed as Matt Mitrione falls ill

Fedor vs. Mitrione

First reported by MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani and later confirmed by Bellator president Scott Coker via Twitter, Saturday night's main event of Fedor Emelianenko vs. Matt Mitrione has been canceled due to an undisclosed illness suffered by Mitrione.

As of this writing, the cause for the illness hasn't been disclosed, nor has any rescheduled date been announced. John Morgan of MMA Junkie said he has heard kidney stones were the reason.

Helwani tweeted that officials tried to find a last second replacement, but were unable to do so. Of note, there is another heavyweight fight on the show featuring Cheick Kongo and Oli Thompson but it's unclear if either man was asked to fill the spot.

As a result, Josh Thomson vs. Patricky "Pitbull" Freire is now the new main event in San Jose, CA.

This was to be Fedor's first fight in the U.S. since a July 2011 loss to Dan Henderson on a Strikeforce event. 

After retiring in 2012, Fedor returned to action in 2015 and was riding a five-fight win streak going into tonight's show although his last performance against Fabio Maldonado was a controversial victory in which "The Last Emperor" looked anything but.

This was the biggest fight of Mitrione's career and his third since signing with Bellator as a free agent in 2016. The 38-year-old is 2-0 in his new home with two T/KO wins.