Former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum had to pull out of his second fight in the PFL promotion recently, but it’s only now that the troubling reason for his withdrawal has been revealed.
Werdum was TKO’d in the first round of his PFL debut last month against Renan Ferreira, but the result was later amended to a no-contest due to replays having showed that his opponent had appeared to tap to a triangle choke just moments before the stoppage.
However, as Werdum then prepared for a quick-turnaround to fight Brandon Sayles barely a month later, his neurologist Dr. Wuilker Knoner Campos discovered that the fighter actually had swelling on the brain and as such decided it wasn’t fit for him to compete.
“I’ve hidden many injuries to be able to fight when I was in my 20s, but now I need to prioritize my health and listen to the [doctor],” Werdum stated in a press release. “I want to be able to enjoy my daughters and see them growing, and that’s the right thing to do at the moment. I’m fine, and I’ll be able to return to training soon.”
Due to the delay in his return to action, Werdum will now not be eligible to compete for a place in the PFL playoffs this season, but clearly his health is far more important, and at 43-years-old the time off may lead him to carefully consider how much longer he wants a career that began almost 20 years ago.