Aleksandar Rakic to undergo surgery for torn ACL after loss to Jan Blachowicz

·2 min read

Aleksandar Rakic received the news he was dreading on Monday when it was confirmed he suffered a torn ACL in his UFC on ESPN 36 main event with Jan Blachowicz.

Rakic’s knee buckled in the third round of this past Saturday’s headliner when he took an awkward back step and gave out underneath him. Rakic (14-3 MMA, 6-2 UFC) was immediately ruled unable to continue, and Blachowicz (29-9 MMA, 12-6 UFC) was awarded the win in the critical light heavyweight bout.

The painful reaction on Rakic’s face made it clear there was likely significant damage, and MMA Junkie verified with a person close to the situation, who requested anonymity, that Rakic was confirmed to have torn the ACL in his right knee following an MRI.

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Ariel Helwani was first to report news of Rakic’s diagnosis on Monday, adding that Rakic has torn the ACL in his left on two previous instances, with this being the first in his right knee.

As a result of the injury, Rakic will be required to undergo surgery. A date for the procedure has not been scheduled.

Rakic, who entered UFC on ESPN 36 as the No. 9-ranked fighter in the USA TODAY Sports/MMA Junkie light heavyweight rankings, does not have a timeline to return, which will be covered under the UFC’s insurance policy because he suffered the injury mid-fight. Historically, ACL tear have kept athletes sidelines from nine month to more than 12 months.

Prior to the injury, Rakic and former UFC champ Blachowicz were tied 19-19 on the scorecard, having split the first two rounds.

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