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Patricky Pitbull suffered multiple injuries during RIZIN GP finals, could need surgery

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Patricky Pitbull injured his right hand during his quick KO win over Luiz Gustavo at RIZIN 20.
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Patricky Freire might have to go under the knife after a busy night of fights in Saitama, Japan, for the RIZIN lightweight grand prix finals.

The Bellator lightweight made short work of fellow Brazilian Luiz Gustavo in the semifinal early in the RIZIN 20 card on Dec. 31, and took on Tofiq Musayev for the tournament crown. “Pitbull” lost an entertaining bout via decision, and post-fight exams showed several injuries.

According to Freire’s manager Matheus Aquino, Freire’s right hand was “likely” broken after the semifinal bout, and he suffered a shoulder injury after falling out of the ring against Musayev.

Speaking with MMA Fighting, Aquino said Freire will do more exams when he returns to Brazil to determine whether or not he needs surgery.

“I broke my hand one more time,” Freire said with a laugh in his post-fight interview backstage in Japan.

According to “Pitbull,” he returned to training too soon after injuring his right wrist earlier this year and experienced some pain over the past few months. One of the punches he landed on Gustavo likely worsened his injury.

That said, Freire still feels he deserved to win the fight against Musayev.

“The fight was very tough,” Freire said. “I just want to congratulate my opponent. I haven’t watched the whole fight yet, but in my head I think I won, but the rules are a bit different here.

“I think I won the first round, and I think I was winning the second round after the yellow card because I was being more aggressive. I think I lost the third round, but I won the first two.”

Freire credits Musayev for his strategy in the three-round contest, but feels he had the advantage on the feet while his opponent went for takedowns as he landed kicks to the body.

Asked if he’s interested in rematching the tournament winner inside the Bellator cage, “Pitbull” quickly replied, “yes, for sure.”

The decision loss snapped Freire’s seven-fight winning streak and crowned Musayev the 155-pound grand prix winner. The Azerbaijan talent went 4-0 inside the RIZIN ring in 2019 with wins over Daron Cruickshank, Damien Brown, Johnny Case and “Pitbull” Freire.