Injured 'Ultimate Fighter' Bader confident he'll return early

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Following his ascension to the top of The Ultimate Fighter heap when he defeated Vinny Magalhaes at The Ultimate Fighter 8 Finale, Ryan "Darth" Bader received a medical suspension from the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

The suspension follows a post-fight examination of his right hand, the same right hand that dropped Magalhaes to the canvas and put Bader on top of the world.

His medical suspension runs through June 9, 2009, unless his right hand is x-rayed and cleared by a doctor.

"I haven't been to the doctor yet, but it's feeling better already," Bader told MMAWeekly Radio recently. "When I got into the locker room, taking the gloves off, I think it's maybe a soft tissue something. I really don't feel I broke anything."

He obviously doesn't seem too concerned with seriousness of the injury. "I think it's just a little tear or something. I kind of did the whole thing with a doctor that was in town and he was like, 'I don't think it was broken,' a doctor that was at or gym. So, I'm pretty confident that I can get cleared whenever I want to."

That's good news both for Bader, who would surely like to start capitalizing on the six-figure contract that came along with winning The Ultimate Fighter, and for the UFC, who would surely like to get him back in the Octagon and take advantage of his newfound recognition from the popular reality series.