Middleweight Mark Munoz made his debut under the Zuffa banner more than three years ago as a member of WEC’s roster, improving his record to 4-0 with an opening round knockout of Chuck Grigsby. However, Munoz didn’t escape the bout unscathed, as his elbow flared up shortly thereafter.
Fast-forward to January 2012 and a bout against Chael Sonnen on FOX with top contendership on the line. With less than two weeks to go Munoz aggravated the same elbow he’d originally hurt in mid-2008, a nagging injury he’d simply gritted his teeth through during the preceding period. Unfortunately, this time around things were different and Munoz had to withdraw from the enormous opportunity he’d been given.
Munoz recently discussed the injury as a guest on MMAWeekly Radio where he detailed the procedure and revealed an unfortunate setback keeping him on the sidelines a month or two longer than originally expected.
“I’ve been dealing with this injury for quite some time, since my first WEC fight, and I continue to injure it with each fight and in training too, so there’s just been some complications and some bone spurs that have developed throughout that time,” began Munoz before going into his recent surgery to correct the problem.
“They shaved off the bone spurs that were still along my elbow and then the chips that were all inside my joints they vacuumed out. It was pretty nasty. They took out about 24 pieces and about five of them were half to an inch in diameter. It was pretty nasty what they pulled out.”
In terms of a timetable for a return to the ring, Munoz said he still can’t put any pressure on the joint and is at the mercy of the healing process for now.
“The doctors are saying four to six weeks before I can put any stress on it,” said Munoz. “They said that before they had the surgery that it would be May when I came back, after they had the surgery they’re saying late June, July. That’s what they’re saying now. It puts me on the shelf a little longer.”
The 34-year old “Filipino Wrecking Machine” is currently on a four-fight winning streak with his last fight coming in November when he earned a TKO stoppage over Chris Leben.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC/FAIRTEX