Up-and-coming UFC Light Heavyweight and Victorian native Jimmy Crute has opened up on his gruesome knee injury and why the time away from the UFC has been the “best thing” for his career.
Crute, who holds a professional record of 12 wins and three losses, was making considerable progress in the UFC Light Heavyweight division before two first-round stoppages against Anthony Smith and Jamahal Hill ended his winning ways.
Prior to his most recent losses, Crute was 5-1 in the UFC and was moving into the top 15 rankings of his division.
Crutes’ two most recent opponents, Smith and Hill will both be involved in Sunday’s Light Heavyweight title clash in Brazil at UFC 283 – with Smith acting as a backup fighter if one of Hill or former champion Glover Teixeira is unable to fight.
Speaking to SEN, Crute shed light on his career-defining injury and how it has helped him rediscover his passion for mixed martial arts.
“I’ve come back from a knee reconstruction, silly me I’ve been fighting without an ACL for two or three years, one day I was walking along and my knee decided to break in half,” Crute said on SEN’s Them’s Fightin’ Words.
“I just thought, ‘You know what it’s time to get this fixed,’ to take this seriously and stop being oblivious to all the negative that is going on.
“I had the year off, which ended up being the best thing I could have done, I have this newfound passion for the sport that I was missing for a long time.
“Injuries happen for a reason I believe, and it’s been the best thing to happen to me.”
Crute reflected on the mental toll that the injury took on him at the time and how he changed his outlook on the sport in his time off.
“There’s one thing to be healthy but it’s another thing to be mentally healthy, I was trying to get through one doorway that just wasn’t for me,” Crute said.
“I had to take a step back and go through another doorway, I feel like I’ve finally found my road.”
Crute will enter the octagon for the first time in over a year at UFC 284 in Perth, going against American Alonzo Menifield (13-3).