By the time the cage door slams shut behind Court McGee (Pictured) and Dongi Yang tomorrow night, it will have been exactly 10 months and 25 days since fans last saw McGee inside the Octagon. After christening his six-figure UFC contract with a spectacular submission victory over Ryan Jensen at UFC 121, “The Ultimate Fighter 11” winner found himself on the injury bug’s hit list.
“Dude, I had six fights in seven months, then now it’s been [10 months] and I had one fight. So of course I’m chomping at the bit,” McGee told 5thRound.com. “One of my sayings is that competition builds champions. I like to compete as often as I can.
“Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to because I broke my hand at UFC 121 and then I blew out my knee training and helping Jake Shields get ready for the [Georges] St-Pierre fight.”
Although the 26-year-old has suffered significant setbacks, he was fortunate enough to make it into the big leagues at the perfect time. The world’s premier mixed martial arts promotion started picking up the tab for their fighters’ medical bills just days before McGee tore his knee.
“The first week of my camp was supposed to start on June 11th and I ended up having to have surgery [in mid-May],” McGee shared. “It’s just one of those things that happened. You’re training, you’re a professional athlete, injuries happen. Thank goodness the UFC got us health insurance, it helped big time.”
Now that his long-awaited return has finally arrived, the only remaining question is whether he’ll enter the Octagon with a fresh pedicure like his fellow Pit Fight Team members.
“They had to convince me to paint my toenails once, but I won’t do it again,” the middleweight said with a smile. “I did it once, but that’s John Hackleman and Chuck Liddell’s thing. That’s part of The Pit family, man. Full service gym.”
McGee and Yang will co-headline “UFC Fight Night 25: Battle on the Bayou” on Saturday night inside the Ernest N. Morial Center in New Orleans, Louisiana.