Being put on the cover of an EA Sports title, can be dangerous. Over the years what is being referred to as the "Madden curse" has hit many athletes in many sports. Often it has been to do with injuries. Enter UFC 2 where EA first put the UFC's biggest star (at the time) Ronda Rousey on the cover. Rousey then lost her belt in a major upset to Holly Holm, who knocked her out with a headkick. Holm, in turn lost her belt to Miesha Tate this weekend.
They opted to have the winner of the featherweight (145 lbs.) title fight between José Aldo and Conor McGregor as the second fighter on the cover. McGregor, the new king of PPV earnings in the UFC, took the honour by finishing the long reigning champion in 13 seconds. This weekend he was meant to challenge for the lightweight belt (155 lbs.), but as his opponent dos Anjos pulled out, he wound up facing Nate Diaz at welterweight (170 lbs.), a decision made as Diaz, normally a lightweight, came in on short notice and would have little time to shed his excess weight.
The fight started well enough for McGregor who bloodied Diaz up in the first round, but Diaz was slowly finding his range and employed the trademark "Stockton slap" (that he and his brother use to great effect). He hurt McGregor in the second, with several pinpoint strikes and McGregor shot for a takedown in desperation. Diaz was able to use his superior grappling against the dazed McGregor to secure a fight-ending rear naked choke.
Losing in MMA is nothing strange, and MMA fighters who fight the best in the world don't finish their careers with unblemished records, but of course it is unfortunate for EA Sports that both their cover athletes were stopped in their latest outings.