Ovince Saint Preux was scheduled to meet mixed martial arts legend Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in a rematch from their fight back in 2014 where OSP knocked out Shogun in 34 seconds. The injury forced a last minute shuffle, and a disappointed Shogun broke his silence about the injury via his Facebook.
“Fighting has been my life for over 15 years. It’s what I chose for myself and what I love to do. For me it’s very hard to pull out of a fight, very hard, and accepting that was the only viable alternative wasn’t easy at all. Unfortunately, early in this camp, I hurt my knee. I spent the entire camp doing everything in my power so I could fight on September 23 (22 in Brazil), and I trained the entire time under medicine, protection in my knee, ice and physical therapy. I went beyond my limit because fighting in Japan again is something I’d been dreaming of for a long time, because I didn’t want to let the fans down, and because that’s how I was raised in martial arts by my master.
I’ve stepped up to fight injured multiple times in my career, and it wasn’t for lack of effort or trying. But, unfortunately, all this effort ended up making the injuries worse, and there came a time when my team and I had to accept there were no alternatives, and I had to pull out of the fight. It wasn’t easy. I’d like to apologize to my opponent I’ve been in the same situation, including when we fought the first time, and I knew it’s never easy. And, mainly, apologize to the fans, especially those who were anxiously awaiting this fight. I will take care of my recovery now, heal my injuries and come back stronger. Challenges are put in front of us every day, and what really matters is how we face them. Thank you all for the kindness.”
The last minute injury gave an opportunity to return for UFC veteran Yushin Okami who normally fights at 185lbs. Saint Preux and Okami went right to the ground almost immediately after OSP stuffed a telegraphed takedown from Okami. Once on top OSP was looking to pass, but while in transition Okami decided to hold onto a guillotine choke. OSP has already tapped out multiple fighters with a “Von Flue choke,” which is a modified arm triangle done after holding onto a failed guillotine in side control. However, OSP was very tricky in that he was able to trap Okami’s arm so he wasn’t even able to remove it from around his neck once it was in position.
Ovince Saint Preux def. Yushin Okami via submission in Round 1.
— UFC (@ufc) September 23, 2017