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UFC on ESPN 53 do-it-yourselfer Karl Williams paid extra price for building a fence

LAS VEGAS – It sounds as if Karl Williams would’ve been back to work sooner than Saturday, if not for taking home improvements into his own hands.

Williams (9-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC) meets Justin Tafa (7-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) in the UFC on ESPN 53 heavyweight co-main event at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Tafa stepped in for his brother, Junior, who had to pull out of the original booking against Williams with an injury.

Williams himself had to stay on the shelf after a recent surgery setback brought about by his desire for do-it-yourself supremacy.

“I had surgery and then recovery, and I was trying to fight in December,” Williams said at Wednesday’s media day. “… I did a lot of stuff I wasn’t supposed to do after the surgery. I went and built a fence, re-did my bathroom, re-did my closet – which ended up making me have to take longer time off because I ended up re-messing up my surgery because of that.”

Williams said the time on the sidelines started to make him appreciate what he does for a living, almost in classic “don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone” mode.

“I don’t hate my job, but you want a vacation and you get on the vacation, it lasts too long and you’re like, ‘OK, I’m ready to go back home,'” he said.

Now that he’s back to the cage for the first time since May 2023, it might be best to not count on Williams to get back into home improvement mode after Saturday.

But then again, he has that fence thing down.

“I did a very good fence. If anybody needs a fence built, I’ve got you,” Williams said.

Check out Williams’ full media day interview in the video above.

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC on ESPN 53.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie