By Elias Cepeda for CagePotato
Joe Lauzon (17-4) has held many roles throughout his 25 years — college student, 9-5er, web designer, coach, business owner — but above all else, he’s always been a fighter at heart. So when doctors told Joe he would have to sit out for at least a year after a surgery to repair a torn ACL, he took on the challenge the same way he approaches every endeavor — he trained for a fight.
“In training camp I’m absolutely miserable between doing all our rounds of sparring and cardio and I focused on my knee rehab the same way," explained the rising UFC lightweight, who has won five of his six official Octagon appearances.
"The place I did my rehab had a mix of people, young and old, and most just go through their exercises and don’t work up a sweat. I had to change my shirt just to drive home because I was soaking wet from pushing it. The place where I did my therapy was also in a gym so there were people there for other reasons than to rehab. My great physical therapist, Chris, pushed me and I progressed so fast that it got to the point where people were coming in thinking that I was in there for something else, like I was already in training camp for a fight, not knowing I had just had ACL reconstruction. I could have taken an easier approach to it but doing it that way really made a difference.”
It certainly appears that way. Based on what his doctors initially told him, Lauzon had planned for a March 2010 return to the cage, but he’s a few months ahead of schedule, fighting Sam Stout (15-5-1) Saturday night at UFC 108.