Lavar Johnson out of Dec. 8 bout

Updated: November 30, 2012, 1:09 PM ET
By Franklin McNeil | ESPN.com

Hard-hitting UFC heavyweight Lavar Johnson suffered a pulled groin and is off the promotion's Dec. 8 event in Seattle, company president Dana White said Thursday night.

"Lavar Johnson is out of the Fox prelims with a pulled groin," White announced on Twitter. "He was fighting Brendan Schaub."

With Johnson unable to compete, Schaub also has been removed from the card. UFC has not yet determined when either fighter will return to action.

Schaub (8-3) told ESPN.com on Wednesday that he was eager to get back in the Octagon and defeat Johnson. A former finalist on "The Ultimate Fighter," Schaub is on a two-fight skid.

"This is professional sports," Schaub said. "If you haven't suffered defeat, then maybe you haven't fought tough competition.

"I surround myself with positive-thinking people. I always fight as if my back is against the wall. And this fight is no different. I expect to walk away victorious."

But he expressed disappointment Thursday upon hearing that his fight with Johnson is off.

"Frustrated would be an understatement," Schaub said on Twitter.

Johnson also was seeking to get back in the win column, following a first-round submission loss to Stefan Struve in May. A hard hitter, 15 of Johnson's 17 career wins have come by knockout.

Before that setback, Johnson (17-6) had won his first two fights under the UFC banner. He issued an apology to Schaub via Twitter.

"I was looking forward to it," Johnson said. "Hope we can get it done in the future. Once again, I'm sorry big dawg."

Despite losing Johnson-Schaub, UFC on Fox 5 remains solid with a number of enticing bouts slated for its main card.

Lightweight champion Benson Henderson makes the second defense of his UFC belt when he meets veteran Nate Diaz in a main-event fight. Henderson once held the WEC 155-pound title.

Former light heavyweight champion Mauricio Rua takes on fast-rising Alexander Gustafsson in a bout that could determine the division's top contender.

And former UFC welterweight/lightweight titleholder BJ Penn faces Rory MacDonald in a highly anticipated 170-pound matchup.