A victorious Pitbull almost pulled out of the grand prix after suffering a knee injury while training for the first round bout.
“I heard a pop and stopped training immediately,” Pitbull said to MMA Fighting. “I knew it was hurt. I couldn’t train anymore. I was limping. I started physical therapy and working on things I was able to do in training without using my legs, but I was worried. It wasn’t serious, but I wasn’t 100 percent confident either. Knee injuries are scary.”
Pitbull now has about two months before he has to fight again, as the fighter faces Luiz Gustavo on December 29.
The Brazilian could have to fight twice in a three day period if he gets a win in the semi-finals, but Pitbull isn’t sure who could also make it to the finals.
“That’s a very difficult question,” he said. “Tofiq Musaev is very tough, dangerous, a complete fighter, but he has a flaw. I’ve seen flaws in all of their games, but I still don’t know who wins this one. In terms of strategy and intelligence, if they stay on the feet, I think (Musaev) wins, but the American can win if he puts the pressure on him. (Musaev) doesn’t react well when he’s under pressure.”
Johnny Case and Tofiq Musaev will fight in the other semi-final round bout on December 29, with the winner facing whoever is victorious in the Pitbull/Gustavo encounter on New Years Eve.