Undefeated UFC featherweight Lerone Murphy is back in action at UFC 286 this weekend – having been told by doctors to stop fighting after cheating death twice.
Nicknamed The Miracle, Murphy surviving being hit by three bullets in Manchester back in 2013 and nearly died from blood loss last year after being hit by a car while on his bike.
Having been rushed to hospital after both incidents, Murphy was told by a medical official that his fighting career was over – before making a full recovery.
With a professional record of 11 wins, no defeats and one draw, the 31-year-old remains a highly promising British project despite not fighting since 2021.
Before UFC 286, Murphy was left in limbo after Brit rival Nathaniel Wood was forced to withdraw with injury, before the UFC found him an opponent at late notice in the form of newcomer Gabriel Santos.
Speaking to the media on fight week, Murphy said: “I’m just grateful to be here more than anything. I’m excited. Usually with fight week it’s different but this time I’m just grateful.”
He added of his two near-death incidents when asked what has kept him going: “Purpose, I’ve got a big purpose in life and that’s what pushes me on.
“I’ve feel like a got a reason to me here. I was told I wouldn’t fight again but that’s what they always say don’t they, now I’ve made a full recovery.
“My time off has shown me resilience, that time off was good for me, I needed that.”
The main event brings welterweight champion Leon Edwards (20-3) and former champ Kamaru Usman (20-2) together for a third time following Usman’s 2015 decision victory and Edwards’ brutal KO victory in August.
Speaking to Daily Star Sport back in October, Edwards said:
“It was one of the worst performances of my career and that was the best Usman we’re going to get.
“That’s what he does in fights that’s the best we will see – and it was the worst of me. I think it will be a totally different fight – with the same result.” – Daily Star.