UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley is still trying to figure out what to do about a shoulder injury, but he’s just thankful the timing works out fairly well.
In July Woodley (18-3-1 MMA, 8-2-1 UFC) notched his second straight title defense with a not-so-acclaimed unanimous-decision win over Demian Maia (25-7 MMA, 19-7 UFC) at UFC 214.
Woodley suffered a partial labrum tear early in the fight, and now he’s considering his options.
“I didn’t completely tear it, but I tore it enough where I should consider surgery,” he told SiriuXM’s “MMA Tonight” on Tuesday. “I’m actually investigating stem-cell (platelet rich plasma) injections – things of that nature first – and rehab because obviously if I can avoid going under the knife, I obviously want to try to do that. So that’s my option right now.
“I tore my left labrum in 2008. At that time, I wasn’t really financially set up to go out and get PRP and stem cell (treatments), and I didn’t have insurance at that time, so my options were really limited. I actually had to wait like two or three years before I could actually get it done just because I didn’t have insurance.
Woodley, who’s No. 1 fighter in the USA TODAY Sports/MMAjunkie MMA welterweight rankings (and No. 9 pound-for-pound), already has wins over No. 2-ranked Stephen Thompson, No. 3 Robbie Lawler and No. 5 Maia (No. 4 Rory MacDonald is now with Bellator, and No. 6 Ben Askren fights for ONE Championship).
Of course, former UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos has been vocal about wanting a fight with Woodley, but the champ suggested it’s a good time to focus on his own recovery while the rest of the 170-pounders jockey for position.Related Champ Tyron Woodley responds to Rafael dos Anjos' callout, has eye on Bisping-GSP winner
“So, long story short, it’s gong to be a minute before I’m out in the octagon, which almost works to the division’s credit because the deck needs to be shuffled a little bit more,” Woodley said. “There’s no real and true clear-cut No. 1 contender right now, and once these fights take place and these guys get out there, compete, do a training camp and fight, the world champion will just be getting back in the mix. So it’ll be perfect timing.”
Woodley said he’s actually talked about PRP options with UFC officials and their medical team – and he’s getting support because “they want their fighters to be healthy and it’s no secret that they want their fighters to be back as soon as possible,” he said.
As for UFC President Dana White, who heavily criticized Woodley after UFC 214 and sparked a war of words, the champ said things are improving.
“As the young kids say, we’re Gucci right now, which means we’re cool and good and 100; I’m trying to earn some brownie points for my son,” Woodley joked. ” … We had a phone call, and obviously Dana White will blow up. Now he sees that I’ll blow up a little bit, as well. But we’re all good. Things are Gucci.”
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