You can add injury to insult for Matt Hughes. Not only did he lose his most recent bout, to Thiago Alves at UFC 85 in London, but he also suffered a severe knee injury.
During the second round of their bout at the O2 Arena on June 7, Alves unleashed a brutal flying knee that put Hughes down and out. On the way down, his left leg bent back awkwardly underneath him, causing severe pain in the knee.
Hughes on Wednesday posted an update on his official blog indicating the severity of the injury, but also the possibility of not having to undergo surgery.
"I found out my results, I've got a totally torn MCL that is still attached to my femur. I've got a partially torn PCL. They really think that the PCL will repair itself and that MCL has a chance of repairing itself. So we're going to hold off on surgery right now. I am going to get a second opinion this week, so that might change; but for now we're going to hold off on surgery."
According to MayoClinic.com, the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) connects the back of the shinbone to the lower thighbone. The medial collateral ligament (MCL) also connects the shinbone to the thighbone, but runs along the inside of the knee joint. A tear in the ligaments causes instability and buckling of the knee.
Prior to the bout with Alves, Hughes gave no hint of retiring. "I'm 34 years old and I'm definitely not done yet, I'm still very healthy... I've got two more fights on my contract counting the Thiago fight. By no means am I going to retire before my contract is over and I'm probably not going to retire afterwards. I feel that I have three or four fights left in me."
After the fight, even with the pain in his knee hammering his senses, Hughes still didn't back away from saying that he had at least one more fight in him. "I'll tell you this for sure, I've got one more fight left in me. Matt Serra needs to come up with a game plan now. My wife wants it. I want it. And I know these fans want it, too."
It is unclear what the time frame is on Hughes' recuperation, much of that will depend on whether or not he is able to avoid surgery. There has also yet to be any word on if and when he will get his opportunity to settle the feud between he and Serra.