Casey O’Neill will likely miss the rest of 2022.
“I’ve spent the past 7 days trying to continue on but it’s just not possible on a fully torn ACL,” O’Neill wrote on Instagram. “I will have surgery, recover and be back better than ever before you know it.”
The news represents a tough turn of events for O’Neill (9-0), who captured MMA Fighting’s inaugural Rookie of the Year award for her 3-0 start to her UFC career in 2021. “King” followed that up by defeating Roxanne Modafferi via split decision in February at UFC 271, a bout that also served as Modafferi’s retirement fight. The 24-year-old O’Neill is currently the No. 11 ranked flyweight talent in MMA Fighting’s Global Rankings.
UFC 276 takes place July 2 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The event is expected to headline the UFC’s annual International Fight Week festivities.
O’Neill’s full statement can be read below.
“Unfortunately I have to announce that I need to withdraw from my upcoming fight on July 2 due to snapping my ACL last week in training.
“I’ve spent the past 7 days trying to continue on but it’s just not possible on a fully torn ACL. I will have surgery, recover and be back better than ever before you know it.
“I’m so sad that I don’t get to perform for you guys, I’m so sad that I don’t get to fight but I am excited to get healthy and rebuild. Thank you to the @ufc @danawhite @mickmaynard2 @heatherlinden @drtera @ufcpi for always taking care of me
“I am 24 years old and young in this game. I promise you I will be back better than before and the King is still coming for her crown. Love you guys, thank you for the support”