Shavkat Rakhmonov Reveals Battling ‘Very Serious Injury’ at UFC 296, Considered Withdrawal

LAS VEGAS – Shavkat Rakhmonov, the undefeated contender with a perfect record of 18-0 in MMA and 6-0 in the UFC, faced a significant challenge heading into UFC 296. Despite ultimately submitting former title challenger Stephen Thompson on the main card at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Rakhmonov had to make critical adjustments to his game plan due to an undisclosed injury.


In an interview with Laura Sanko, Rakhmonov revealed that he had torn a major ligament in his ankle just six weeks before the fight, which left him contemplating whether he should withdraw from the bout. He shared, ‘I had a very serious injury, and I was even close to pulling out from the fight, but I decided to risk it all. That’s why I didn’t kick it with my legs; I just used my knees. But thank God, I got the victory.’


Despite the challenges posed by his injury, Rakhmonov, who was the odds-on favorite at UFC 296, continued to impress by maintaining his 100 percent finish rate. Known as “Nomad,” he expressed his determination to fight through adversity and fight to the best of his abilities, saying, ‘Hopefully next time, with God’s willing, I’m going to be 100 percent. But it doesn’t matter. Whatever injury, you know I’m going to fight to my last blood until the last sip of blood because I have to get a win.’


Rakhmonov’s grit and resilience have earned him a place among the most promising fighters in the UFC, and fans eagerly await his next bout, hoping to see him at full strength.”

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