Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight No. 1 contender, Gabriel Gonzaga, shattered his right hand during his 265-pound collision against Stipe Miocic on Jan. 25, 2014, in the main card of UFC on FOX 10, which went down at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois.
After undergoing surgery to have a plate and a couple of screws put in to repair the hand, "Napao" is set undergo yet another surgery to have them removed.
Once fully healed, Gonzaga eyes a late 2014 return to action, as he recently told MMA Fighting:
"I had a complicated fracture. My bone was completely broke and I had to put a plate with four screws. I didn't lose any movements, but I have to go on surgery again to remove the plate and the screws or I can suffer another fracture."
Gonzaga went on to lose a unanimous decision to Stipe, breaking his two-fight winning streak, which he earned by knocking out Dave Herman and Shawn Jordan in a combined time of 1:50.
Undeterred,"Napao" is determined to come back stronger than ever.
"That's how the sport is, one loss and you're back to the end of the line. I still don't have any fight in mind (for my return), but I'm sure that I will be back with everything with my gym Team Link. We opened a new gym in Natick, Mass., so I will have a better structure to have more athletes helping me throughout my camp. We have a good relationship with Boxer MMA team and we do a good work together as well."
According to the bruising heavyweight, he is currently training light jiu-jitsu, but isn't allowed to punch just yet.
"Napao" currently sits at the No. 12 spot in the official rankings, but with his upcoming hiatus from fighting, he may slip down a few spots.
How about it, Maniacs, got any ideas for a good comeback fight for the heavy-handed Brazilian?