Bulgarian heavyweight Blagoi Ivanov has recovered from the serious stab wound that hospitalized him in February and his life is no longer in danger.
ProMMAInsider.com confirmed with a source close to the fighter that the former world combat sambo champion was recently released from Pirogov Hospital in Sofia, Bulgaria and is even hoping to one day return to competition.
Ivanov was reportedly stabbed while attending an after party at Graf Ignatiev restaurant with two friends this past February. A group of eight armed men allegedly attacked Ivanov’s party, stabbing Ivanov under the armpit and penetrating his heart.
Ivanov was rushed to the hospital, and at that time it was unclear if he would survive the attack. Fortunately, Ivanov made great strides over the course of a 10-day span, in which the fighter made a “miraculous recovery” prior to being released by the hospital.
Ivanov, 25, has yet to lose as a professional mixed martial artist. Initially, he staked his claim to fame by defeating former top-ranked heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko in the 2008 World Sambo Championships en route to capturing the gold. He then joined Bellator in 2011, knocking out William Penn at Bellator 38 before submitting Zak Jensen in the Season 5 heavyweight tournament quarterfinals with a guillotine choke this past October.
Ivanov would not advance in the tournament, however, as he was forced to withdraw from the bracket with an injury. He returned to competition on Dec. 24, earning a technical knockout over former UFC heavyweight champion Ricco Rodriguez in his appearance inside a cage.