On Wednesday it was announced that A.J. Mckee had to withdraw from the upcoming Bellator x Rizin 2 event. For Bellator, whose portion of the card will air on SHOWTIME, the highly anticipated World Grand Prix bout that had Mckee facing Patricky Pitbull will not have Roberto de Souza.
In a Bellator MMA press release that followed, it was said Mckee withdrew “due to medical reasons. Later, Mckee took to social media to let fans know the details behind his having to step out of the Grand Prix.
Mckee apologized to fans, letting them know he would be “back in Japan soon” and then detailed what happened.
“I ended up catching staph guys,” Mckee explained. “You know staph. It’s a really bad infection, flesh-eating. It literally puts you in the hospital, I had to go to the ER. I’ve been on antibiotics and it’s healing up well.”
Mckee showed the marks from the infection on his knee and vowed to return to action “stronger, better than ever.”
Just to clear the air 🙌🏾💯🙌🏾 The progression of this infection in 1 week smh.. A few more weeks of rest/healing and it’s back to the grind.🦾🙏🏾 pic.twitter.com/mYmznV1Puw
— AJ “The Mercenary” McKee (@ajmckee101) July 27, 2023
Staph infections ( staphylococcus) are fairly common in contact sports and while it can be treated, very serious infections can take a turn for the worse if left untreated. It is also contagious which is why, while Mckee seems okay and it looks minor in his video it can endanger other competitors.
McKee defeated de Souza in the last crossover event in Japan on New Year’s Eve and Bellator MMA president Scott Coker did say that McKee will be an alternate for the Grand Prix once he is medically cleared to compete.
In the meantime, Bellator x Rizin 2 will move forward this weekend on SHOWTIME. See the updated card and time below:
BELLATOR X RIZIN: Pitbull vs. De Souza: Sunday, July 30 at Saitama Super Arena in Japan
SHOWTIME (U.S.) – July 29 at 11 pm ET / 8 pm PT
Lightweight World Grand Prix Quarterfinals: #2-Patricky Pitbull (24-11) vs. Roberto De Souza (15-2)
Inaugural Flyweight World Championship: Kyoji Horiguchi (31-5) vs. Makoto “Shinryu” (16-1-1)
Flyweight Bout: #3-Kana Watanabe (11-2-1) vs. #7-Veta Arteaga (7-5)
Bantamweight Bout: #4-Magomed Magomedov (19-3) vs. #5-Danny Sabatello (14-2)
Welterweight Bout: #5-Andrey Koreshkov (26-4) vs. #9-Lorenz Larkin (25-7, 2 NC)
Edward holds a black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Bachelor’s degree in Communications. Along with over 30 years of martial arts experience, he co-hosts The Coast-2-Coast Combat Hour podcast, and also writes for Spectation Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @Carbazel