UFC Vegas 54: Jan Blachowicz Details Scary Injury, Rehab To Make It Back To Fighting

Las Vegas, NV – Former UFC light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz returns to the octagon this Saturday night in the main event of UFC Vegas 54 against Aleksandar Rakic in what could be a title eliminator bout.

Blachowicz (28-9) last fought in Oct. 2021 at UFC 267 where he dropped the belt to Glover Teixeira via submission on Fight Island.

“It’s good memories from this place. Always I feel good in Vegas. Only one time I feel bad here, but now I don’t do same mistake. I come here three weeks before fight to catch the time zone, catch the climate, everything. Finish my camp here. I’m just ready for Saturday,” Blachowicz told reporters on Wednesday.

The fight against Rakic was originally set for UFC Columbus on March 26th, but Blachowicz withdrew after suffering a scary injury which left him temporarily paralyzed on his left side.

“When I feel this when my left side of body was completely paralyzed for 1 minute I think I was having heart attack or something like this. I was scared I don’t know what’s happened. I go to doctor, we do MRI, for my neck. They say that something in my neck put a lot of pressure on my nerve, and when someone just hit me right on the head then was this kind of feeling,” Blachowicz described.

“So they put some medicine inside my neck so the pressure was very low. And then four weeks of rehab, rehabilitation, and after four weeks my physio said ok, you can go to the gym and start training like before.”

Blachowicz described testing the injury by covering up and taking light shots and then increasing the intensity to see how the nerve would react and everything went well.

“So now I don’t feel anything. It’s like before, I never have it,” Blachowicz said.

Coming off a nerve injury like Blachowicz’s and then having to start a training camp could have been hard for most fighters.

“I start my camp like always. Small details we changed, we know we have to find good sparring partners with size and similar style to Aleksandar, and that’s it you know. Same sh*t, every day,” Blachowicz laughed.

There isn’t much in the game of MMA that Blachowicz hasn’t seen so a younger opponent is not one that will intimidate the former champion.

“You know I’m in the sport almost all my life you know. I start training when I was 9-years-old so I do this all my life. So I think I feel everything inside the octagon and outside also. For sure he’s very dynamic, very powerful guy, very big. He looks like he’s very strong, powerful kicks, but I think I feel it many times before. Nothing new for me,” Blachowicz said.

“I have to be ready. I have all the respect to him because he’s great fighter. It’s going to be tough fight for sure. I have to be ready for very tough fight.”

Watch the full UFC Vegas 54 Media Day appearance by Jan Blachowicz above. More coverage from the event can be found at CagesidePress.com