Tyron Woodley has released a statement explaining his move to pull out of his UFC Minneapolis against the former champion Robbie Lawler.
When reports emerged yesterday that the long-time welterweight champion Tyron Woodley had been forced to pull out of his matchup due to a hand injury, the immediate question was one surrounding the identity of The Chosen One’s replacement.
And while not much else is known on that front right now, Woodley himself has confirmed the news, breaking down exactly why he had to make the call.
Speaking on a livestream that was broadcast from his official Instagram page (via LowKickMMA), Woodley explained how the problem with his hand was one that bothered him during his UFC 235 defeat to Kamaru Usman.
“A lot of questions about my hand and me not fighting June 29. I don’t know if they’re going to reschedule me and Robbie for a different date or if they’re going to actually get him a new opponent, but I got to make sure I protect my hand. That’s where I make the money with. I have to be confident throwing my moneymaker, my right hand.
“I toughed it through the last fight, guys, a lot of f**king tape. This time around I’ve got to be honest with myself. The gripping, the grabbing, the posting, the pushing off, the strength, the snapping – all of the above was a little bit more difficult. I’m going to make sure I put myself in position to be successful. At the end of the day, I got to get that belt back. I’ve got to put myself in the best position.”
As of right now, it looks as though the UFC are fully set on keeping Lawler in the main-event slot on the card, with many of the division’s elite fighters calling for a chance to take him on.
The announcement of the fight between Woodley and Lawler itself wasn’t exactly met with the warmest of receptions from fight fans.
Sure, on paper it’s a good matchup, but given that Tyron already managed to KO then-champion Lawler in the first round back at UFC 201, it never seemed as though the timing was right on this one.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena