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Anthony Pettis Hoping to Avoid Knee Surgery That Could Sideline Him Up to Six Months


(Unfortunately, the human body’s ligaments simply weren’t designed to handle this much #SWAG. / Photo via showtimepettis)

After tearing his PCL during his UFC 164 title win against Benson Henderson, UFC lightweight champ Anthony Pettis spent two months rehabbing the injury. As you’ve probably heard by now, that hasn’t really solved the problem.

“The first time I came back (to train in the gym) I got a light kick in the shin and it swelled up real bad,” Pettis told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Pettis was forced to scrap his UFC on FOX 9 title defense against Josh Thomson to have his knee issues resolved, but it’s been rough going so far. He’s already had three different doctors give him three different recommendations, and he’s getting a fourth opinion next week in Los Angeles. If that fourth doctor recommends surgery, that will likely be his course of action.

“Most doctors don’t operate on PCLs, so no one has a clear answer at this point,” Pettis said. “I’m going to L.A. after my brother’s fight to get another opinion. If I do need surgery, the time frame is four to six months off. If we decide to rehab, it’s another four to six weeks. I’m hoping for no surgery, but I don’t want this to be something that keeps happening…I’m trying to figure out the right steps now. My biggest fear is that I give it four to six weeks (of rehab) and then the same thing happens.”

Pettis went on to say that the UFC has been very supportive during this process, covering the lightweight star’s travel and medical expenses to make sure the injury is taken care of properly. But if you ask UFC president Dana White, a long layoff is almost certainly in Pettis’s future:

“He’s definitely going to need surgery,” White told MMAFighting.com. It’s just one of those things. Gotta get him healed here and see what happens.”

In the meantime, the lightweight division will go on without its champion. As of now, top contenders¬†Josh Thomson, TJ Grant, Gilbert Melendez and Khabib Nurmagomedov are all waiting for their next assignments. I say, throw ‘em all together in a one-night four-man tournament to determine the next title challenger. And since something like this would never be approved by the Las Vegas or New Jersey athletic commissions…shall we say Helsinki?

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