Jiri Prochazka seriously injured – Vacates the UFC belt!
UFC light heavyweight champion Jiri Prochazka announced that he is pulling out of UFC 282 and vacating his belt due to a serious shoulder injury. Prochazka was scheduled to defend his title against Glover Teixeira on December 10 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Teixeira was offered the opportunity to fight someone else for the title but declined. The UFC has made former champion Jan Blachowicz versus Magomed Ankalaev the the main event as the two fight for the vacant title.
Tim Simpson, Prochazka’s manager said:
“The shoulder got wrecked in a standard wrestling accident type of thing.”
Simpson reported that the injury happened at the UFC Performance Institute. He said it popped out.
“You know how shoulders are, right?” Simpson said. “It pops out and a lot of the time, you pop it right back in. There was a wait and it popped out. And you never really know with a shoulder until you dig into it.”
UFC president Dana White added:
“This is the worst shoulder injury the doctors have seen in UFC history,” White told Yahoo Sports. “It’s really f***ing bad. His shoulder is very, very bad. He’s going to have serious surgery that will require extensive rehab.”
Simpson said that the team is still in the process of figuring out when and where the surgery will take place.
Due to the extensiveness of the injury, Prochazka also decided to vacate his light heavyweight title. Dana White praised the decision, saying that Prochazka was being considerate of other fighters because of to the projected length of recovery.
“We met with Jiri last night and listen, this guy is one of the classiest humans of all-time,” White said. “He is such a warrior and was so bummed out. He brought up stepping aside to us before we ever got there. He’s going to be out a long time and at some point, we would probably have had to strip him. But he brought it up to us and said out of respect for the other fighters, he didn’t want to hold up the division. Let me tell you, that kid’s a stud, man, to react like that.”
The UFC offered to pit Teixeira against Ankalaev for the vacant title, but he declined. Instead, the UFC has offered the fight to Jan Blachowicz and Magomed Ankalaev. Dana White said:
“We offered Glover the fight [against Ankalaev]. For some reason, he didn’t want the fight, so we had to move on. If we couldn’t have the rematch, getting Ankalaev, who has the second-longest winning streak in light heavyweight history, and Blachowicz, who is the former champion, is really fortunate. It all fell into place for us as it often seems to do. But that’s a great fight, too, and now it’s for the full title.”
Blachowicz is ranked #2 and Ankalaev #3 in the UFC’s current light heavyweight rankings. The new co-main event at UFC 282 is a lightweight fight between rising fighter Paddy Pimblett and Jared Gordon.
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