Tyron Woodley is one of the best welterweights to ever compete inside of the Octagon, yet the veteran fighter has fallen on hard times of late.
Not only did “Chosen One” get dominated by Kamaru Usman this past March to lose his welterweight title, but he was recently forced out of a high-profile rematch with Robbie Lawler on ESPN due to a hand injury. Woodley was later diagnosed with chronic arthritis in that same hand which could lead to more significant problems in the future.
Luckily, Woodley has learned throughout his years of fighting to harness the chaos, both inside and outside of the cage, and work towards a better reality. The former UFC champion picked this up through watching the career of fellow MMA superster and current UFC light heavyweighyt king Jon Jones.
“I am best when I’m in chaos,” Woodley said in a recent appearance on The Ariel Helwani MMA Show. “And I had to come to grips with that. I heard Jon Jones say he didn’t train in between camps. I’m like, damn, I thought I was the only one. It was kind of my hidden secret.
“And if you notice, Jon…not to compare myself to Jon because, in my opinion, he may be the best MMA athlete we’ve ever seen…but Jon has had so much chaos in his life outside the Octagon, but he’s managed to hone in inside the Octagon,” Woodley continued. “And I’ve found that, don’t run from it. Don’t hide from it. God built you a certain way.
“And I say this time and time again, the renaissance man was a man that did a lot of things good but did no things great. But that was his ass; that ain’t me. I won’t sit on gifts. I won’t sit on gifts that God gave me. Because if you sit on them, you bury them, they get taken away,(and) somebody else do it.”
Woodley, 37, currently has no timetable to return considering his newly-diagnosed chronic arthritis will require exemption from a state athletic commission since “Chosen One” will need cortisone shots just 10 days before a fight. That doesn’t leave Woodley with many options in the near future so fight fans are eager to see where he goes from here.
But given his competitive nature and proven ability to bounce back from a disappointing career loss only to claim gold at the highest level, don’t be surprised to see Woodley fighting for his UFC belt again sometime next year. As long as he can harness the “chaos” that has plagued other fighters like him, “Chosen One” should have his chance to redeem these past few months.