MMA fighter Richard Arsenault healing at home after disappointing loss

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SUMMERSIDE – Local mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Richard Arsenault is home in Summerside this week and resting under doctor’s orders after a heartbreaking loss in Vancouver on Saturday.

Doctors stopped Arsenault’s World Series of Fighting (WSOF) bout against Michael Hill, 26, only minutes into the second round after the 36-year-old Wellington native lost the use of his one of his legs.

He isn’t sure what happened, only that he lost the use of the limb in the closing moments of the first round.

“The doc tried to stop it but, I told them it was just a cramp so he let me go into the second round for about two minutes. But he could see it wasn’t just a cramp – my leg wasn’t working, so he came in and stopped the fight,” he said.

The technical loss is a huge disappointment for Arsenault, who has devoted his life over the past year to working on his MMA career.

The WSF is the third largest MMA league around, he said, so this fight was a big opportunity for him. So much so that he dropped 28 pounds in two weeks so he could qualify in time.

“I felt great going into this fight. So to lose like that really sucks,” he said.

Subsequent visits to physicians revealed he hadn’t torn any muscles, but would still require six weeks of rest to heal his leg.

Arsenault intends to keep training his upper body while he heals – he’s got a boxing match in March – but it’s MMA where he intends to keep his focus.

“Its lit a fire underneath me, this whole fighting in Vancouver thing. Now I can’t wait for it to heal up so I can get going,” he said.

There is talk in local MMA circles that an Ultimate Fighting Championship event could be coming to the Maritimes sometime next year, so Arsenault is setting his hopes on getting on that fight card.

In the meantime, he’d like to thank everyone, especially the fans on P.E.I., who have supported him up to this point.

“I got a lot of support from the Maritimes.  I got hundreds of inboxes from people who were watching the show and they gave me a lot of support. Even though I lost, they were there trying to encourage me to keep going,” he said.

Colin.MacLean@JournalPioneer.com

Organizations: World Series of Fighting

Geographic location: Wellington, Vancouver

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