Julianna Pena at the TUF 18 Finale Weigh-Ins. Credit: MMAWeekly.com

TUF Winner Julianna Pena Sidelined For Up to 2 Years, Per Dana White

The severity of Julianna Pena’s injury is far worse than was once thought, and after withdrawing from her UFC 171 bout with Jessica Andrade, it was revealed on UFC Tonight just what occurred. Pena, who won the inaugural women’s TUF competition – The Ultimate Fighter 18 – has suffered a torn meniscus, ACL, MCL, LCL and hamstring. She will reportedly have surgery once the swelling on her knee has gone down. To put this into perspective, former UFC Welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre suffered a torn ACL alone which led to an 11 month hiatus.

Dana White revealed via Twitter that Pena could be out for 2 years, and the TUF winner voiced her disappointment and emotion at suffering such a major injury. White also called for the 135-lber to change fight camps immediately, directing the blame in its entirety in their direction. He branded the story “the most disgusting thing I have ever heard”, while Pena’s coach Rick Little labelled it the most gruesome injury he has ever seen in sports.

UFC Tonight’s Ariel Helwani reported via Twitter that the injury was as a result of Pena training with male MMA fighters, though stated this wasn’t an unusual thing for the TUF champ. Helwani emphasised how Pena loves to train, and trains 3 times a day when possible, but a combination of lacking warm-up and high intense workout led to ‘The Venezuelan Vixen’ suffering a brutal injury. As UFC president Dana White suggests, this shouldn’t happen in a fight camp for a high profile fighter currently ranked #10 in the UFC’s Women’s Bantamweight division, and his calls for her to find a new camp aren’t without reason.

The 24-year old is one of very few women to train at the fight camp, Sikjitsu, which is home to fellow UFC alumni Michael Chiesa and Sam Sicilia. With a potential 2 year wait before her next training camp, who knows what will happen with Pena’s future. We wish her all the best in her recovery, and hope to see her in the Octagon very soon. Below are the aforementioned Tweets from Helwani, White and Pena.




Tags: Ariel Helwani Dana White Julianna Pena TUF UFC Tonight

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