The former UFC light heavyweight champion, Jiri Prochazka suffered a devastating shoulder injury before UFC 282. Dana White called it the worst injury he has ever seen. This led to Prochazka’s rematch with Glover Teixeira falling through. Instead, Magomed Ankalaev and Jan Blachowicz fought for the vacant title after being promoted to the main event.
Shortly after his injury, Prochazka told iDNES Sport in an interview conducted in his native tongue, Czech, about when he would come back. He said, “After consulting with other experts and surgeons, I don’t see it being more than half a year until the next fight. A maximum of seven months.” Initially, there were diverging opinions on when Prochazka would return. Some sources stated that the former champ could be out for a year or more.
Speaking on this, the Czech fighter said, “A lot of people are saying it’s necessary to keep it eight, nine months, but I know my body, and I believe I can fix it in three or four months to the full power.” It seems UFC fans will not have to wait too long for the Bushido-abiding fighter’s return. Based on Jiri’s assessment, he should be back in the octagon by September or October. However, between match-making and training camps, this timeline may end up being inaccurate.
Who will Jiri Prochazka fight upon his return?
Jiri Prochazka on the MMA Hour said, “Yes, we agreed on that…If you promise me a title match, I have no problem” said the former champion. It would seem Prochazka’s comeback fight was decided to be for the title when he relinquished the belt following his injury.
The UFC LHW title is once again up for grabs at UFC 283 after the draw between Ankalaev and Blachowicz. With Prochazka’s confirmation of his next fight, he could very well end up facing the winner of the UFC 283 main event. Glover Teixeira prevailing over Jamahal Hill would once more set up a rematch of their legendary UFC 275 fight. And fans will be hoping this series of events come to fruition.
How did the former champion injure himself?
Jiri revealed on the same episode of the MMA Hour that his shoulder already wasn’t at 100% heading into UFC 282. However, an incident during a sparring session led to his gruesome injury. “Everything was light, nobody did something wrong, but I did a mistake. I let the guy take my back. He did a suplex right on my shoulder. That was that.” revealed Prochazka.
The former RIZIN champion also told Ariel Helwani that it was Magomed Ankalaev’s teammate who sealed Prochazka’s fate after attempting to reset his shoulder. “The shoulder was out, and one guy, he put me that shoulder back — one of the Russian guys from Ankalaev’s team. And after that, we went to the hospital.”
UFC President Dana White too blamed Ankalaev’s teammate for attempting to play doctor and exacerbating the injury.