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Kelowna’s Rory Macdonald overcomes gruesome leg injury to win Welterweight title

The mixed martial arts octagon is not for the faint of heart.

Rory Macdonald proved that much during his five-round battle to win the Bellator Welterweight Championship belt over the weekend.

En route to his victory, Macdonald suffered a violent hematoma bruise on his right shin after receiving a barrage of shin kicks.

“My mind was telling me to break a couple times but I stayed strong and pushed through,” said Macdonald in an interview with KelownaNow. “I had to switch to southpaw to avoid more kicks, force the grappling and get the fight to the ground.”

While in control of the fight for the first four rounds, Macdonald had trouble with his balance and standing in general during the fifth and final round.

“This was the most pain I have been in during a fight. I had to go inside my mind and pray to god to give me the strength and keep pushing,” explained Macdonald. “But it’s a dream come true to win the Welterweight championship.”

The dream almost came true in 2015 when Macdonald entered the fifth round of a UFC Welterweight Championship with a chance to win before having his nose shattered by a right hook. The fight has since gone down as one of the best in the history of the UFC.

The 28-year-old's journey to become a championship fighter began in Kelowna when he was a teenager training at Toshido MMA, where he still splits training time to this day.

“I grew up in Kelowna as a teenager, I went to Dr. Knox and OKM, where I graduated high school,” reminisced MacDonald. “Those were really formidable years for my career and led to me moving to Montreal.”

The fighter, who now splits training time between Kelowna's Toshido MMA and Montreal's Tri-Star Gym, saw two of his passions collide this year when he secured a sponsorship from cryptocurrency company Dash ahead of his championship fight.

“I've been involved in cryptocurrency since 2014 and have become really passionate about learning what it means for the world and watching it grow in popularity,” said Macdonald. “The UFC doesn’t allow sponsors whereas Bellator does, so being able to secure a crypto sponsor like Dash means a lot to me and other fighters because it opens up new financial opportunities to athletes like myself.”

For now, Macdonald is focused on recovering from his post-fight injuries and spending time with his family.

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas from my family to yours!

A post shared by Rory "RED KING" Macdonald (@romac_gorilla) on

Click here to stay up to date with MMA fighter Rory Macdonald via his Instagram account.

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