Josh Emmett fought through serious knee injury in epic UFC win


UFC featherweight Josh Emmett celebrates a win. (John Woods/CP)

Josh Emmett improved to 16-2 and cemented his status as a UFC featherweight contender this past weekend thanks to his unanimous decision win over Shane Burgos in what was perhaps the most entertaining three-round fight of 2020.

What made the victory all the more impressive is the fact Emmett battled through a slew of injuries he sustained in the bout.

Early in the opening round, Emmett’s left knee appeared to hyperextend and it buckled several times throughout the fight. The 35-year-old said afterwards he lacked stability and that it affected his balance but at the time he wasn’t exactly sure the severity of his injuries.

Emmett revealed Monday night the extent of the damage, which included a torn ACL.

“When I say I’m willing to go through HELL and suffer any amount of pain to get my hand raised, I mean it!!!” Emmett wrote on Instagram.

Emmett and Burgos each earned $50,000 bonuses for Fight of the Night although you wouldn’t have guessed it based on Emmett’s post-fight comments.

“In my mind, I’m a tough critic on myself. I didn’t get to move. I didn’t get to do what I wanted to do,” Emmett told reporters in Las Vegas at the post-fight media availability. “I use a lot of movement, a lot of lateral movement and I really wanted to mix up the wrestling and do things, and I hurt my knee in the first 45 seconds, so I felt I had to stand there and play sock’em, rock’em robots and just slip and rip. I dunno. People are saying it’s a good fight, I guess, but I didn’t get to scratch the surface of what I’m capable of.”

Emmett was ranked No. 8 in the 145-pound division prior to the fight. It’s unclear at this time how long he’ll be on the sidelines recovering.

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