Things didn't go too smooth for Stefan Struve in his first mixed martial arts (MMA) fight in Japan.
"Skyscraper" saw his four-fight win streak and title hopes go down in flames, leaving Saitama, Japan, with a parting gift courtesy of the heavy-handed Heavyweight contender Mark Hunt: A shattered face. "Super Samoan" cracked Struve with a several powerful haymakers, which floored the Dutch fighter and ultimately shattered his jaw into pieces (see the carnage here).
His health update:
"I'm doing great. They put a nice titanium plate in there. I'm going to start training again probably next week, sparring in 10 weeks and hopefully be back in four to five months. Everything's going well. I expected a lot worse to be honest with you. I thought I'd be eating through a straw right now, but I'm chewing and talking and all the good stuff. So, I'm doing well."
Struve also revealed in the final weeks leading up to his showdown against Hunt that his training camp wasn't the best, suffering through a "heavy flu" coupled with a bad case of jet lag. He was, however, quick to dismiss any excuses and gave credit where credit is due, saying Hunt was the better fighter in "The Land of the Rising Sun."
Looking ahead, Struve targeted a potential Oct. 2013 return to the Octagon, but he must face his first "scary" sparring session.
Upon his return to action, Struve, 25, said he isn't looking to take it easy and wants a Top 10-ranked contender in order to prove he is worthy of being mentioned as one of the best in the division and as a future title contender.
Any ideas for Struve's welcome back bout?