Mark Hunt’s hand healed, looking for August return

Mark Hunt is about ready to bring the pain again.

Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Brendan Schaub wants to fight Mark Hunt, but up until recently, Hunt wasn’t so interested in that matchup. In fact, he once said about it that it would "be like going backwards."

Hunt recently had to consider the possibility when he was approached about the fight, and whle he entertained the possibility, he told UFC Tonight’s Ariel Helwani that he could not take the fight because he wasn’t ready.

Hunt has been resting his left hand since injuring it in his fight with Antonio Silva, but he told Helwani that he was recently cleared to start punching and expects to be back by August. Hunt suffered a fracture during the Dec. 7 five-round war, which ended in a draw. 

The slow recovery stopped him from fighting on the New Zealand card, which was just announced for June 28 in Auckland.

The UFC may still be interested in Hunt-Schaub, though the two fighters are separated by several slots on the official UFC rankings. Hunt is currently No. 8 while Schaub is No. 14.

Schaub (10-3) is currently on a two-fight win streak, with victories over Matt Mitrione and Lavar Johnson. However, he hasn’t competed since last September, as he’s been waiting for an opponent to materialize. That probably explains his interest in talking up a fight.

Prior to the Silva fight, Hunt (9-8-1) had lost to Junior dos Santos in a loss that ended a four-fight win streak. 

UFC officials haven’t publicly commented on a potential matchup between the pair, but have often been receptive to bouts that have been paired off by the fighters themselves.