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Injuries

RDA tells “Inside MMA” Recovery Going Well; Will Be Ready for UFC 200

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UFC Lightweight Champion Rafael Dos Anjos’ injury that forced him out of his highly anticipated showdown with UFC Featherweight Champion Conor McGregor at UFC 196 is finally on the mend and it looks like we won’t have to wait too much longer until we see him back in action. Just last night the Champ sat down with Bas Rutten and Mauro Ranallo on the set of “Inside MMA” to talk about the details of his recovery from a broken foot and who he has his sights set on for a future showdown:

“[This was] my first week without the boot. My doctor cleared me to walk barefoot,” Dos Anjos revealed. “I started working a little bit, hit some bags, doing some techniques…I will be ready by July. I want to fight in July. I’m here. Whatever UFC decides, I’ll be ready,” Dos Anjos confidently stated. “In three more weeks I’ll be ready to jump, to kick. In July, I’m ready.”

The hope is that he is ready for UFC 200 in July. While the card has already announced a women’s title will be on the line with Meisha Tate defending her bantamweight title against Amanda Nunes, as well as an interim title fight between Frankie Edgar and Jose Aldo, UFC 200 is still missing a marquee men’s title fight that is not for an interim belt. The addition of RDA on the card would certain help to silence some fans and members of the media who have been critical of the fact that there is not a major men’s title fight and the headliner of an event that is being billed as the greatest UFC PPV of all time is a rematch between Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz, a fight that we just saw less in March of this year. At this point, it is hard to blame, but there is a lot of time between now and July 9th. The two fights that Dos Anjos really wanted for the event where a title defense against Diaz or super fight against welterweight champion Robbie Lawler, but he told “Inside MMA” that both of those requests were not granted by the matchmakers of the UFC.

RDA, who trains at Kings MMA in Huntington Beach, California, with the world-renowned head coach Rafael Cordeiro and UFC Heavyweight Champion Fabricio Werdum thinks that the promotion a different idea for his next fight:

“Maybe they have different plans for me. I need to defend my title against Eddie Alvarez. I think he is maybe the No. 1 contender. He is coming off a victory over Anthony Pettis, a former champion. But I told them, I fight anybody, any weight.”

Dos Anjos took the title in a one-sided unanimous decision win over Anthony Pettis at UFC 185. In his first defense, he stopped fan favorite Donald Cerrone via TKO in a mere 66 seconds at UFC on FOX 17 this past December. His overall UFC record stands at 14-5, however, he has won 10 of his last 11 fights with the promotion.

While many fans have not gravitated towards him the way they have Conor McGregor, RDA is a true warrior who fights for his family rather than fame. His humble approach may not be the best as far as generating interest for his fights but no one should ever question his heart or love of fighting:

“[This injury] was hard on me. I just want to fight,” he said whole heartily. “I kept in shape. Even with the injury, I was able to keep my diet. I want to fight anybody.”

Hang in there Champ. I think I speak for all fans when I say that we can’t wait to see you get back into the cage.

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Bellator

James Gallagher out of Bellator 187 in Dublin due to injury

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Irish fans will have to wait a little longer to see James Gallagher fighting on home soil after Gallagher suffered a knee injury in preparation for his main event fight with Jeremiah Labiano in Dublin next month. This bad news was first reported by MMAFighting.com.

The 20-year-old from Strabane co. Tyrone who trains in the famous SBG gym with Conor McGregor and Gunnar Nelson among others has set the featherweight division alight since joining Bellator in 2016.  James “The Strabanimal” Gallagher has gone 3-0 with all three of his wins coming by rear naked choke.

After submitting Chinzo Machida, the brother of former UFC light heavyweight champion, Lyoto Machida in Madison Square Garden Gallagher has become a budding star for Bellator.

Due to the youngster’s attitude and potential, many comparisons between Gallagher and UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor have been made by the fans and media which has made Gallagher one of Bellator’s most recognizable names. This notoriety has ultimately led to the young Irishman getting a chance to headline in Dublin this November but this injury has delayed his rise for the time being.

Gallagher on social media Thursday stated that he has suffered an injury to his PCL and LCL in his knee and would be out for the remainder of the year. He has assured fans we would return next year and carry on where he started with “The Jimmy show.”

His longtime rival AJ McKee, who has engaged in a Twitter war with Gallagher after his last fight, will now headline Bellator 187 in the 3 Arena in Dublin on November 10th against Gallagher’s SBG teammate Brian Moore. Moore will be making his third appearance for Bellator in this featherweight clash.

 

 

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Injuries

UFC 216: Paige VanZant Pulls Out of Fight with Jessica Eye

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Paige VanZant vs Ronda Rousey

The UFC 216 card looks to have suffered a major blow as Paige VanZant has been pulled from the card citing a back injury, per Ariel Helwani.

VanZant (7-3) has not fought since losing to Michelle Waterson back in December 2016 and was scheduled to make her Flyweight debut against the unranked Jessica Eye.

As of, MMA Fighting, the number 10 ranked UFC Strawweight suffered an intervertebral disc injury whilst training jiu-jitsu, and was advised by her doctor to miss training for a few weeks.

Not only is this a major blow for VanZant as she looks to regain some momentum following her last outing, but it must be considered a huge blow for the UFC as VanZant is a popular figure who can contribute significantly to the buy rate.

Eye (11-6) will also be feeling hard done by on this occasion, as this marks the second time in a row her opponent has pulled out of scheduled bout, she was looking to make things right after suffering four defeats in a row.

The injury will not require surgery so there is a possibility of rescheduling the contest for a later date, although nothing has yet been mentioned. It remains to be seen whether Eye will wait, or ask to be rescheduled with a new opponent.

UFC 216 takes place at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas on October 7th and is headlined by Tony Ferguson vs. Kevin Lee for the Interim Lightweight Championship, it also features UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson as he takes on Ray Borg in his record eleventh title defence.

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Injuries

Germaine de Randamie out of UFC Fight Night 115

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Former UFC Women’s Featherweight Champion Germaine de Randamie has been forced out of next weeks Fight Night event in Rotterdam. The Dutch fighter was set to fight Marion Reneau in the UFC’s return to the Netherlands. The news was first reported by MMA Junkie.

‘GDR’ won the Women’s Featherweight belt back in February after beating former Women’s bantamweight champion, Holly Holm. The kickboxer won the fight by a controversial decision after punching Holm after the bell in two rounds. Germaine also injured her hand in the fight and announced shortly after that she would need surgery. GDR never ended up getting the surgery and that same injury has now forced her out of the upcoming fight.

Germaine ended up getting her title stripped a few months later after she refused to defend the belt against the now current champion, Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino. She told many reporters that she considered Cyborg a cheater after she ended up failing a drug test for performance enhancing drugs. After a lot of backlash from both fans and fighters, the UFC stripped her title and made a new title fight at UFC 214 between Cyborg and Tonya Evinger. Cyborg ended up winning the fight by TKO in the 3rd round.

The UFC plan on keeping her former opponent Marion Reneau on the card and are currently searching for a replacement opponent. Reneau is currently coming off of a majority draw against Brazilian fighter Bethe Correia. Reneau’s biggest win so far in the UFC is against Jessica Andrade in a fight she won by submission via triangle choke.

The card is currently headlined by a heavyweight fight between Stefan Struve and Alexander Volkov. The card takes place on September 2nd in Rotterdam, Netherlands and will stream exclusively on UFC Fight Pass.

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