Derrick Lewis
The Black Beast

USA

Booked for UFC 244
HeavyweightUFC
August 1, 2019
Lewis (knee) has been confirmed for a heavyweight matchup against Blagoy Ivanov on Nov. 2 at Madison Square Garden in New York.
ANALYSIS
Lewis underwent knee surgery in March that was expected to hold him out for a 4-to-6 months, and a November bout would land well beyond that timeframe. Lewis is coming off of two straight losses for the first time in his extensive MMA career and takes on a fighter in Ivanov who is riding a two-match winning streak after losing his debut to Junior Dos Santos. The story in this fight will be similar to most Lewis fights. "The Black Beast" brings tons of power into the cage, while Ivanov is probably the more technical striker. Lewis has been known to run out of gas in the later rounds at times, so his best bet is to get the early finish, as Ivanov has already accumulated 45 minutes of Octagon time in three UFC bouts.
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Fight in works for UFC 244
HeavyweightUFC
July 31, 2019
A fight is in the works for Lewis to take on Blagoy Ivanov at UFC 244 in New York at Madison Square Garden, Brett Okamoto of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
Nothing is set in stone yet, but the bout would be his first since undergoing ACL surgery in March. It would be a relatively quick return for Lewis given the severity of the injury. If the fight comes to fruition it would come nearly a year after he lost a title fight in the same building to Junior Dos Santos. Expect an update once more clarity on the match comes to light.
Timetable set after surgery
HeavyweightUFC
March 26, 2019
Lewis is expected to miss 4-to-6 months following Tuesday's scheduled knee surgery, Greg Rosenstein of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
It was revealed after his loss to Junior dos Santos that Lewis has been dealing with a partially torn ACL, in addition to a fully torn MCL and meniscus. The knee problems have plagued the heavyweight fighter for quite some time, and there was speculation around his camp that his coaches perhaps wanted him to withdraw from the UFC Wichita main event. Lewis still took his pay day and competed, but will now finally address some of these health concerns. Even with a bad knee, Lewis showed heavy power punches that fans have come to expect from "The Black Beast," but he was ultimately bested by what appeared to be a superior fighter in dos Santos. It was the second consecutive loss for Lewis after winning his previous three bouts, but one has to wonder what the 34-year-old fighter is capable of at full strength with both legs under him. Fight fans will have to wait until late-2019 to see that potential ceiling.
Headed for ACL surgery
HeavyweightUFC
March 19, 2019
Lewis (knee) will undergo surgery next Tuesday for a torn ACL in his left leg, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
Lewis has reportedly been fighting with a torn ACL for the past four years and felt it "go out" during the second round of his bout with Junior dos Santos earlier this month. In addition to the ACL injury, he's also torn his MCL and meniscus, so The Black Beast will take some time off to undergo a procedure and clean up the knee. Lewis is aiming to be sidelined for approximately six months before returning to the Octagon.
May take time to rehab knee injury
HeavyweightUFC
March 13, 2019
Lewis' coach, Bob Perez, said Monday that the heavyweight fighter battled a "major" knee injury heading into his second-round TKO loss to Junior dos Santos over the weekend at UFC Wichita, Marc Raimondi of MMAFighting.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Perez noted that the injury prevented Lewis from running as part of his training prior to the bout, though Perez noted his pupil received full clearance from a doctor to compete. The injury coupled with the weight Lewis needed to cut ahead of the fight likely impacted his performance against dos Santos and could prompt the 34-year-old to take some extra time off before returning to the Octagon. Perez said if it were up to him, Lewis would take the next seven months off before fighting again late in 2019, but it's unclear if Lewis actually intends to wait that long.
Finished by Junior dos Santos in Wichita
HeavyweightUFC
March 9, 2019
Lewis lost to Junior dos Santos via TKO (punches) at 1:58 of Round 2 at UFC Fight Night on Saturday in Wichita, Kansas.
ANALYSIS
It was a typical Lewis fight in the sense that there was a crazy amount of action in a short period of time. Lewis appeared to be moving better in the early stages of the bout than at any point in recent memory and he started off throwing a ton of kicks. Round 1 was a back and forth affair before Dos Santos smashed "The Black Beast" with a spinning kick to the gut that turned the tide of the fight. Lewis was in immediate agony and although he managed to somehow survive the round, he never truly recovered. Lewis landed two or three of his trademark bombs, but JDS ate them. Having entered the company nearly five years ago as nothing but roster depth, Lewis has already competed in five main events and fought for the UFC Heavyweight Championship during his time with the UFC. There will be more ups and downs for the 34-year-old moving forward, but he's clearly a fan favorite and will continue to get high-profile fights despite Saturday's setback.