MMA Fighter Dislocates Shoulder But Refuses To Tap Out

by : Emily Brown on : 03 Feb 2020 13:58
MMA fighter suffers horrendous arm injuryMMA fighter suffers horrendous arm injuryUFC Fight Pass/Twitter

An MMA fighter suffered a horrendous arm injury during the Cage Fury Fighting Championships after refusing to tap out. 


Pat Sabatini took on James Gonzalez for the featherweight title at the championship event in Bensalem, Pennsylvania, on Saturday, February 1, but the fight came to an end after less than a minute in the cage.

The pair sprung into action upon hearing the opening bell and the fight was quickly taken to the canvas, where Gonzalez found himself on the bottom. The New Yorker fought back by grabbing hold of Sabatini’s right arm, at which point the 29-year-old should have definitely tapped out.

Watch what happened below (I advise you do it through your fingers):


Gonzalez had a tight grip on his opponent and started to bend his arm backwards to increasingly unnatural angles. Sabatini presumably knew there was only so far his arm could go, but he chose to let the fight continue regardless.

Eventually the inevitable happened, and Sabatini’s arm appeared to snap like a breadstick, leaving his limb sickeningly twisted.

Gonzalez shouted to the referee he had broken the former champion’s arm and the ref immediately stopped the fight. I admit, I’m slightly curious to know how long Sabatini would have been willing to go on for – he was clearly determined not to give in.

MMA fighter suffers horrendous arm injuryMMA fighter suffers horrendous arm injuryUFC Fight Pass/Twitter

The 29-year-old could be seen looking down at his arm in what appeared to be disappointment rather than pain, though I’m sure once the adrenaline of the fight wore off he would have felt the effects of his broken arm.

Sabatini entered the ring on a three-fight winning streak but his awful injury meant he lost his title to Gonzalez. Medics assessed Sabatini’s arm and he was later diagnosed with a suspected dislocated shoulder and elbow, though the full extent of his injuries is not yet known, MMA Junkie report.

The crowd were extremely unimpressed with the events and began to boo the New York fighter, who expressed his best wishes to his opponent.


Speaking after the fight, Gonzalez said:

First I would like say, I wish that didn’t happen. I wish he could have tapped and saved his arm from breaking like that.

I respect Pat Sabatini, he’s been on the circuit with me since I started and I always thought I was going to fight him sooner but we fought tonight and this is what happened. I wish him a speedy recovery and that’s all I got to say about that.

Sabatini’s determination should be commended, though I imagine the incident will have taught him to give in before it’s too late. Hopefully he’ll make a full and fast recovery!

If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected] 

Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: Sport, Cage Fury Fighting Championships, James Gonzalez, MMA, Pat Sabatini


MMA Junkie
  1. MMA Junkie

    Watch through your fingers: James Gonzalez wins CFFC title by nasty injury TKO