It was revealed Sunday that former UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos went under the knife for an arthroscopic procedure on his knee just two weeks ago. Naturally, this puts his bout against Islam Makhachev scheduled for October 30 in serious jeopardy. However, when informing Sherdog of this news, dos Anjos made it very clear that he had every intention of remaining on next month’s UFC 267 card.
“I’m already walking without crutches, in 10 days I need to be able to sparring,” dos Anjos said. “I’m a fighter; I always want to fight. We already told the UFC what happened. By the way, the UFC was great at paying for all my surgery expenses. But of course, I can’t decide alone. I have to hear from my trainer, my doctor and physiotherapist. We must take the final decision in one week.”
This isn’t the only surgery dos Anjos has undergone this year. The first one was six months ago for an abdominal hernia and was a much more critical issue. But despite what has thus far been a trying year, the Brazilian is used to facing difficulty head-on, whether it’s the inevitable health issues fighters struggle with or if it’s a challenging assignment like Islam Makhachev.
“For sure he is a pretty tough kid, but I never had a easy path,” dos Anjos said of Makhachev. “My history in that sport is always facing the toughest opponents of my division in their prime. I faced Ferguson coming from eight straight wins, Kamaru Usman and Khabib [Nurmagomedov] undefeated, Anthony Pettis coming from five straight wins, [Robbie] Lawler also in great shape. I’m a fighter, I love the most difficult tests, that’s why I really want to keep that fight.”
Dos Anjos/Makhachev Officially Canceled
Hours after the initial Sherdog report, MMA Junkie brought attention to the fact that the fight has indeed been canceled, with dos Anjos and Makhachev confirming as much in the following Twitter exchange:
Here was dos Anjos’ reply:
“Do you really think I would fake a surgery? Coming out of another terrible injury. Unlike you I have a family that depends on me and I don’t have another man paying my bills.”
The UFC is currently actively seeking a replacement to fight Makhachev on the UFC 267 card on October 30.
We will keep you updated on Islam Makhachev’s status for UFC 267, so be sure to keep it locked right here on MMANews.com.