'Babalu' pulls out of Strikeforce

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Strikeforce executive Mike Afromowitz on Wednesday confirmed to MMAWeekly.com that Renato "Babalu" Sobral has had to withdraw from his bout with Anthony Ruiz at the promotion's Sept. 20 return to the Playboy Mansion. He was unable to address the severity of the injury, however.

In speaking with Babalu's manager, Richard Wilner, late Wednesday, it appears that the knee injury isn't nearly as serious as it could have been.

According to Wilner, "In preparation for the fight, Babalu hurt his knee while training. I want to say, while training wrestling. An MRI revealed a partial tear in the medial meniscus."

A consultation with the initial doctor recommended surgery, which was confirmed by a second opinion. Surgery was performed Wednesday, Sept. 3, and was a "huge success."

Just a week following surgery, Babalu has already returned to the gym to do some upper body training. Because he sought medical attention just one week after the injury, instead of trying to fight through it, Wilner said that Babalu "should be fully mobile within two weeks."

"He plans to fight for Strikeforce in November, ideally against Bobby Southworth for the light heavyweight title," revealed Wilner. "And considering what happened with Affliction (on Wednesday), I imagine he'll probably be fighting for them in January."

Neither a fight with Southworth in November, nor a bout for Affliction in January are done deals, but what Wilner is working towards for Babalu.