In the turn of a few hours, Thiago Alves dropped out of his UFC 111 bout with Jon Fitch because he wasn't medically cleared, and Ben Saunders was named as a replacement to take on Fitch. Saunders had been scheduled to fight Jake Ellenberger, leaving Ellenberger as the odd man out.
"I was disappointed," Ellenberger told Cagewriter. "Ben Saunders asked for the fight, Dana liked that, so our fight took a backseat."
When the news first broke that Alves was out, Ellenberger thought everything would go on as normal.
"It took me by complete surprise."
Ellenberger, who had stepped in to face Saunders when Martin Kampmann was cut in practice, said that UFC matchmaker Joe Silva is looking for a make-up match for Ellenberger. In the meantime, he has been paid both his show and win money for the bout.
"That helps a lot. It eases the pain of not fighting."
Ellenberger, who is 1-1 in the UFC, still wants to face Saunders, but doesn't have a rooting interest in Saturday's bout.
"In the future, I still want to fight him. I trained specifically for him," Ellenberger said. "It will happen down the road."
With the fight off, Ellenberger is enjoying the little things. Since he doesn't have to cut weight, he is chowing down. He plans on staying in Newark to catch Saturday's fights, and is really looking forward to the Carwin/Mir tilt.