Due to a hand injury, BJJ black belt Rafaello “Tractor” Oliveira has been forced to withdraw from his upcoming lightweight bout with UFC newcomer Reza Madadi at UFC on FX 1 on Jan. 20 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn.
Oliveira (14-5 MMA, 1-4 UFC) first made the announcement via Twitter (@RafaelloTractor) Thursday afternoon:
“Guys unhappily I won’t be able to fight @ufc Nashville , my hand still hurts a lot, I was really looking forward to fight on my state :-(“
In an email to ProMMAnow.com (www.prommanow.com) Oliveira explained what happened:
“I broke my hand in my last fight with Yves Edwards, so I was doing good and one month before the fight, I started to try to land my cross more and I hurt it again in a sparring session, so I went to the doctor and he told me I am not able to strike for three weeks, so I had to heal first to be able to fight again, I think March, maybe February would be good.”
Oliveira fights out of Knoxville Martial Arts under the tutelage of head coach Eric Turner and is teammates with Strikeforce light heavyweight rising star Ovince Saint Preux.
Jan. 20th would have been the 29-year-old Oliveira’s first fight in his home state of Tennessee since signing with the UFC in 2009.
“Tractor” fought twice inside the Octagon in 2011, dropping a second round submission to Gleison Tibau in May and a second round TKO to Yves Edwards in October. With so much on the line, it is very important “Tractor” be 100 percent when he returns to the Octagon.
A new opponent for Madadi’s (11-2 MMA, 0-0 UFC) UFC debut has not yet been named. The Iranian-born Madadi is on a six fight win streak and fought his last five fights in Sweden under the Superior Challenge banner.
Recent victories over Junie Browning, Carlo Prater and Rich Clementi helped earn Madadi a spot in the big show. Stay close to ProMMAnow.com (www.prommanow.com) for a potential announcement regarding Oliveira’s replacement.
UPDATE (12-23-11): Upon request ProMMAnow.com received an email late Thursday night from Oliveira explaining the injury.