UFC 268: Al Iaquinta Reveals What Brought Him Back to MMA Ahead of Bobby Green Fight

New York, NY — Whether he’s fighting or working in real estate, Al Iaquinta is known as one of the more fun personalities in the UFC’s lightweight division. After a loss to Dan Hooker in 2019, Iaquinta has been gone from the sport due to injuries which required multiple surgeries. Now, he returns and faces Bobby Green at Madison Square Garden on November 6 at UFC 268.

After over two years away from MMA, Iaquinta explained why he was gone for so long.

“I had a surgery, it was during COVID, I don’t know, maybe a year and a half ago. Took a lot longer than the doctors had anticipated for me to recover. I didn’t know what was going on, nobody knew what was going on,” Iaquinta recalled during this week’s UFC 268 media day. “Why I was feeling the way I was feeling— but I just pushed through it. It was tough but every day just kept going. Started to feel good. I trained people in the neighborhood. Started just like moving around with some guys a little bit. For a while I’d just train them and kind of sit there and be depressed that they were training and I was pushing them and stuff. But then I started moving around with them and I was like ‘Wow, I’m actually feeling pretty good.’ I called Ray [Longo] and said ‘Ray, you want to try hitting some pads?’. So we hit pads and I felt good.”

When Iaquinta saw that MSG was targeted for UFC 268 he thought of one opponent that he had just seen fight.

“I saw Bobby Green fight. We were supposed to fight in 2015 and that fight never ended up happening. In my head I was like ‘Oh Bobby Green.’ He didn’t win the fight but I honestly thought he won the fight. It was a great fight, he came on strong at the end. And then the next day my manager texts me ‘The UFC just offered you Bobby Green at MSG.’ I was like ‘Perfect, I’m in.’ So it all kind of just like came together at the right time.”

As far as the fight itself, Iaquinta is well aware of decisions in Green’s career but Al made a point that he’s going in there to fight.

“Yeah I think that’s Bobby Green’s thing. He kind of keeps it close but doesn’t, he’s got a really unique style. He’s been fighting often. I’m going in there to fight. I’m not going in there to do anything else, or have a good show or whatever. I’m going in there to fight and win. So I think that’s going to be the difference.”

With the UFC’s lightweight division possibly being the best in the promotion, Iaquinta is set to make a comeback and it begins against Bobby Green at UFC 268 on November 6 at MSG.

Watch the full UFC 268 media day appearance from Al Iaquinta above. More coverage of the event can be found below. UFC 268 takes place Saturday November 6 at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY.