Considering their extremities are tools of the trade, it should come as no surprise to see a fighter left with some injuries here and there throughout their career.
A great example of this is Corey Anderson and his middle finger, which has been bent since his fight against Glover Teixeira at UFC Fight Night: Shogun vs. Smith over four years ago. He earned a unanimous decision but left the Octagon with a permanent reminder of his win that night. That reminder can be seen below, courtesy of CBS Sports’ Luke Thomas:
This is Corey Anderson’s middle finger, which he tells me has been this way permanently since he fought Glover Teixeira.— Luke Thomas (@lthomasnews) August 29, 2022
He says he doesn’t consider this an injury because he argues it never prevented him from taking a fight. pic.twitter.com/FGoMZSGm3H
Dr. David Abbasi — the orthopedic sports surgeon known for his thorough explanation of injuries — shared his thoughts on what has caused the damage to the finger.
“This appearance is a Boutonnière Deformity,” wrote Abbasi. “It’s caused by an extensor tendon rupture at the middle phalanx. This then causes that joint to flex, due to unopposed flexion.”
This appearance is a Boutonnière Deformity— David Abbasi, MD (@DrDavidAbbasi) August 29, 2022
It’s caused by an extensor tendon rupture at the middle phalanx. This then causes that joint to flex, due to unopposed flexion. https://t.co/rjFsIK5Ne5 pic.twitter.com/Lsv0QNKbdH
Abbasi also answered if Anderson could still undergo surgery to fix it.
“When it is this chronic, surgery is not as good of an option,” wrote Abbasi. “This is an easier fix if you get to it right away, could have just been tested with a splint. But it seems that ship has sailed, unfortunately.”
When it is this chronic, surgery is not as good of an option.— David Abbasi, MD (@DrDavidAbbasi) August 29, 2022
This is an easier fix if you get to it right away, could have just been tested with a splint. But it seems that ship has sailed unfortunately.
Anderson confirmed surgery was out of the question after a doctor told him it could potentially end his career.
“It hurt initially, but it’s pain free now,” wrote Anderson. “Went to get it looked at, Dr. stated the surgery could hender [sic] me making a fist properly (which could possibly mean no more fighting), so [I] objected.”
The bent finger has not kept Anderson from fighting, though. ‘Overtime’ went on with his career, finished his time with the UFC and moved over to Bellator MMA, where he has reached the top of its light heavyweight division in just four fights.
The 32-year-old tore through his opponents in the Light Heavyweight World Grand Prix, finishing Dovletdzhan Yagshimuradov and Ryan Bader at Bellator 257 and Bellator 268, en route to a showdown with Vadim Nemkov in the finals for a shot at the championship and a $1 million prize. Unfortunately, Nemkov vs. Anderson ended in a No Contest after an accidental clash of heads caused a cut above the eye of the champion, who could not continue.
Fortunately, Nemkov and Anderson are officially set to rematch at Bellator 288 on Nov. 18 at Wintrust Arena in Chicago.