by Mick Hammond – MMAWeekly.com
The last several months have been quite a turn around for Ryan Healy.

After missing nearly a year of action due to a knee injury, Healy is healthy, determined and on the right track thanks to having joined Team Quest last year.

Having had a couple tune-up fights in 2007, Healy is looking to step into the big time again as he makes his Strikeforce debut this coming Saturday in Tacoma, Wash. against fellow rising prospect Jorge Masvidal.

“I’m really excited about this year,” commented Healy. “Last year was pretty rough, coming off of ACL surgery. I only had two fights the entire year, so I’m just happy to start this year off with a big fight.”

As he explains, even though he wasn’t able to physically be involved in the sport, it never left his mind during his time away, thus keeping him focused on his return.

“The whole time I was injured, all I was thinking about was getting back in shape and getting back in the ring,” explained Healy. “I was out, I couldn’t train or couldn’t do anything, but fighting was still on my mind.”

As soon as he was cleared to fight, he began fully integrating with Team Quest, which according to him, looks to have been the best thing he could have done for his career.

“I got really serious about training with Team Quest. It’s really where I’ve started to come into my own as a fighter,” stated Healy. “I feel confident and I’ve just progressed and gotten better, and I have a lot more tools in my arsenal.

“I want to show what I’ve got. I want to show where my game is, and I just want to show off my skills and prove that I can be one of the top fighters at my weight.”

Ryan will get an opportunity to show off those skills in a fight that could very well be the most entertaining of the night as he takes on Masvidal, who is riding a two-year winning streak.

“I think he’s really tough and he’s really peaking himself as far as his career,” said Healy. “He has a big win over Yves Edwards and is coming into his own as a fighter.

“So I think it’s the perfect time to fight him. I can steal some of his thunder with a big win over him.”

Against a fighter such as Masvidal, Healy knows he has to be aggressive and not get behind early in the fight.

“I’m looking to bring an in-your-face game,” he admitted. “I want to push the pace because I’m in phenomenal shape and I think I’m in better shape than him.

“I want to be right up in his face. I want to push the pace no matter where it goes, whether it’s on the ground or on the feet.”

Back at full strength, Healy is looking to make this year a breakout one and solidify himself with much wanted continuity.

“This year I just want to establish myself as a top up and comer,” he stated. “I want to find a show that I can fight for that will get behind me and will give me tough match-ups where I can prove myself. I think that Strikeforce is a perfect opportunity for a solid event that I can do that.

“I’d like to fight as much as possible. At least every two to three months and have quality fights. Not fighting chumps or lower level guys. I want to be fighting the top notch guys on top notch shows.”

As Healy states, Strikeforce this Saturday could be just the place for him to begin to make his run in what is sure to be a standout fight.

“I want to thank Clinch Gear and Dirty Boxer for supporting me; and everybody at Team Quest that have helped me train and progress as a fighter,” concluded Healy.

“To the fans, this is the year of the Healy, both me and my brother. Pat’s got a big fight a week after mine and I think people are going to start taking notice of the Healy brothers.”