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Jake Rosholt out of action indefinitely with herniated disks

Former UFC middleweight works towards recovery, is certain he’ll rejoin organization eventually

Jake Rosholt on His Neck Injury

Middleweight Jake Rosholt discuss the injury to his neck that forced him to pull out of an April fight against Jeremy Horn

Las Vegas-based fighter Jake Rosholt is out of MMA indefinitely because of two herniated disks in his neck.

The former UFC middleweight was scheduled to fight veteran fighter Jeremy Horn at a King of the Cage event April 16 but was forced to pull out because of the injury.

One month later and Rosholt (7-2) says most of the efforts he's taken to recover have been unsuccessful, as he's still experiencing numbness in his arms and fingers.

"I hurt my neck two days before the fight and ended up being two herniated disks in my neck," Rosholt said. "It's still hurting me just as bad as it did the day it happened. I have numbness in my arm and tingles in my fingers.

"The good news is I will have a full recovery. It's just going to take some time."

Rosholt had a short stint in the UFC, joining the organization in February 2009 before getting cut that November.

He fought three times, finishing with a record of 1-2. His lone win came against Chris Leben via a third-round submission at UFC 102 in August.

Despite defeating one of the more popular fighters in the 185-pound weight class and holding his own against Kendall Grove before losing via a triangle choke at UFC 106, Rosholt admitted he was half-expecting the UFC to cut him after going dropping two of his first three fights.

"I had actually just told a good friend of mine a couple days before that they could let me go," Rosholt said. "I lost two of three, so I could see it from their side. I still think I'm as good or better than a lot of guys they have at 185. I just have to get better and win fights — prove myself again."

A win over Horn, who's fought in and out of the UFC since 1998, would have been a big step back toward the biggest MMA organization in the world — which made the injury all the more disappointing to Rosholt.

Rosholt already had came back strong in his first fight since getting cut, taking out Rudy Lindsey by rear naked choke just 2:37 into the first round of their fight in March.

But as disappointing as it was for him to back out of the Horn fight, there was no way Rosholt could have fought through the injury, which doctors told him is seen mostly in car-accident victims.

"I wasn't looking at is as, if I won, that fight would put me right back," Rosholt said. "I was looking at it as a good chance to show my improvement and stay on the same path to get back in the UFC.

"Anybody who knows about his sport knows what a pioneer Horn is. It was an awesome fight for me, and it was really hard not to be able to go out and fight."

Although there is no time frame for Rosholt's return, he said there is no chance the injury will end his fighting career and even is hopeful that a fight with Horn will be remade once he's fully recovered.

Until then, Rosholt said the time has been made easier by the big wins of his teammates.

WEC lightweight Shane Roller recorded a big submission win over Anthony Njokuani on the company's first pay-per-view April 24. UFC welterweight Johny Hendricks followed that up with a decision win over T.J. Grant at UFC 113 on May 8.

Rosholt is looking forward to the day he can rejoin those teammates in the gym — and on the biggest stage.

When asked if he believed 100 percent he would rejoin the UFC someday, Rosholt responded, "Yes, for sure."

Brett Okamoto can be reached at 948-7817 or [email protected].

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