Bruce Buffer back for UFC 268 after battle with COVID-19: 'I'm ready to roar'

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Longtime UFC broadcasting legend Bruce Buffer is back.

Buffer, after contracting COVID-19 last month and missing his first pay-per-view event in more than 24 years, will make his return to the Octagon on Saturday at UFC 268 in New York.

“I don’t feel ill effects right now,” Buffer said Wednesday, via MMA Fighting. “I feel good and I think my lungs are 100%. I’m ready to roar.”

Bruce Buffer: COVID pandemic is not over

Buffer missed UFC 267 in Abu Dhabi last weekend after he contracted the coronavirus — something he said “got really bad” for about four days.

The 64-year-old said he received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine well before he tested positive for the coronavirus, something he credits for stopping the coronavirus from hitting him even harder. After that and other treatments, he said, he’s feeling back to his normal self.

Naturally, as he’s been the voice of the UFC for more than two decades, he was very concerned about how the coronavirus would impact his lungs and his voice.

“That’s one of the biggest fright factors I had,” Buffer said, via MMA Fighting. “I started feeling it in my lungs and I started coughing and coughing up stuff, like, ‘Oh man, is this going to go where I think it’s going to go?’ ”

Buffer is perhaps among the most recognizable voices throughout all of sports, as he’s called UFC bouts, boxing events, video games and even worked on “Monday Night Football.” He joined UFC in 1996, and said he believes he’s been at every event since UFC 13.

Even though his streak is over, he’s not too upset bout it. “Streaks are meant to be broken,” he said.

But more importantly, Buffer had a message for UFC fans.

“All I can tell everybody is that this [pandemic] is not over,” Buffer said, via MMA Fighting. “If I get it, anybody can get it … So just play it safe. And it’s no joke. That’s all I can tell you. I’m in really good shape. You know that. I take care of myself. I eat right, I train right, I’ve been an athlete my entire life.

“Yes, I’m 64. I don’t know what this would’ve been had I not had the [vaccine]. For me, I took the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, right? The vaccine is not armor to avoid getting it, but it’s armor to avoid going into the hospital.”

UFC Octagon Announcer Bruce Buffer
UFC icon Bruce Buffer will be back in the Octagon this weekend after a scary bout with the coronavirus. (Cooper Neill/Zuffa LLC)
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