Perennial UFC welterweight contender and former interim champion Carlos Condit suffered the first TKO loss of his illustrious career this past Saturday; UFC 171 was the scene and an apparent knee injury was the leading cause in second round stoppage against Tyron Woodley.

An update from Condit’s trainer Greg Jackson on ‘UFC Tonight’ confirms the worst; ‘The Natural Born Killer’ suffered a torn ACL at UFC 171. The injury is becoming more commonplace in MMA, and has struck down great champions such as Anthony Pettis, Dominick Cruz and Georges St-Pierre in the past.

The painful injury will certainly require surgery and has caused layoffs as long as two years in pro MMA before. ‘The Dominator’ ended up vacating his title due to complications after his torn ACL, and GSP was out for almost 18 months when he tore his cruciate ligament.

The standard recovery period for the nasty ailment is 6-10 months or longer, meaning it is highly unlikely that Condit will fight again before this time next year. What does this mean for the welterweight division? Well, it probably couldn’t have come at a worse time.

CC’s torn ACL adds yet another complication to an already top-heavy and messy division. Since ‘Rush’ vacated the title, fans have been waiting eagerly for the crowning of the new champion. Johny Hendricks filled that void by beating Robbie Lawler at UFC 171, but has also been sidelined for the immediate future.

As we look at the top end of the stacked category, we have three guys on the same fight team, Condit and the champ injured, Jake Ellenberger booked to fight at the end of April, and Rory macDonald. Things could not get any more complicated for the 170-pound division right now.

Condit dropped to 1-3 in his last four with the loss at UFC 171, and who knows what the division will look like upon his eventual return. Will we ever see ‘The natural Born Killer’ in the title picture again?