UNCASVILLE, Conn. — Bellator 249 was thrown a late curveball on Thursday night when co-headliner Patricky Freire was pulled from his fight. Freire (23-9 MMA, 14-7 BMMA) was slated to fight Jaleel Willis in the co-feature lightweight bout at Mohegan Sun Arena, but word broke toward the end of the evening’s preliminary card that Freire was not cleared by the physician for the Mohegan Tribal Athletic Commission over what was termed an undisclosed medical issue. Bellator officials told MMA Junkie that both competitors will still be compensated for their fight. The dropout means that a scheduled heavyweight preliminary bout between Steve Mowry and Shawn Teed will bump up to the main card, which will be headlined by Cris Cyborg’s featherweight title defense against Arlene Blencowe.

Photos: Behind the scenes at Bellator 249 weigh-ins

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