Saturday’s UFC Vegas 54 main event pitted two European elites against each other, one looking to rebound from a devastating championship defeat, and the other looking to continue his ascent towards a first title shot.
In the end, Blachowicz bounced back from his setback last October, and staked his claim for a rematch with champion Glover Teixeira. He did so via third-round TKO, which came as a result of a knee injury suffered by opponent Aleksandar Rakić.
But despite adding another top name to his record in what was his 29th professional win, as well as cementing his place as the #1-ranked light heavyweight in the UFC, it wasn’t all positive for the Polish powerhouse.
In the first round, Blachowicz suffered a nasty cut under his left eye, something that was visibly affecting him inside the cage. During his appearance at the post-fight press conference, the former titleholder admitted being unsure as to whether it came as a result of a punch or an illegal eye poke.
“I don’t know (how it happened). I feel it when it happened. It was in the beginning of the first round, one of the first punches. I don’t see anything in the first round with this eye. (Michael Bisping) said it was a finger, Aleksandar said it was a punch.”
Nevertheless, it was severe enough to leave Blachowicz requiring surgery. He said he’s expecting the procedure to take place today, with the magnitude of the operation unknown.
“It’s OK, but I’m going to have some small surgery on Monday on this eye,” revealed Blachowicz. “Doctor says maybe it’s going to be small, maybe going to be bigger. He don’t know yet. He need to check in the hospital.”
When he’s fully recovered, Blachowicz will look to share the cage with the reigning champion, which will be former opponent Teixeira should the Brazilian defend the gold against Jiří Procházka at UFC 275 next month.
Should Jan Blachowicz fight for the title when he next enters the Octagon?