Jiri Prochazka apologizes for UFC 282 withdrawal, explains vacating light heavyweight title

says he’s sorry he had to pull out of and vacate his light heavyweight title, but he vows to get it back.

On Wednesday, Prochazka (29-3-1 MMA, 3-0 UFC) apologized to fans, the UFC, and previously scheduled opponent Glover Teixeira (33-8 MMA, 16-6 UFC) in a written statement on shortly after of his right shoulder injury.

Prochazka said he anticipates being out of action for at least six months. Prochazka detailed the thought process behind his withdrawal and indicated his paramount goal during a difficult situation was to not hold up the rest of the division.

As a result, Magomed Ankalaev (17-1 MMA, 9-1 UFC) and Jan Blachowicz (29-9 MMA, 12-6 UFC) will headline UFC 282 .

Prochazka, 30, had not pulled out of a UFC fight prior to this withdrawal. He went 2-0 with knockouts over Volkan Oezdemir and Dominick Reyes before defeating Teixeira by fifth-round submission in a Fight of the Year candidate this past June at UFC 275.

UFC president Dana White praised Prochazka for the decision to vacate, which he said the fighter initiated before the promotion suggested it.

“We met with Jiri last night and listen, this guy is one of the classiest humans of all time,” White said. “He is such a warrior and was so bummed out. He brought up stepping aside to us before we ever got there. He’s going to be out a long time and at some point, we would probably have had to strip him. But he brought it up to us and said out of respect for the other fighters, he didn’t want to hold up the division. Let me tell you, that kid’s a stud, man, to react like that.”

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