UFC veteran Gray Maynard feels more comfortable talking about the post-fight career dangers in mixed martial arts after Spencer Fisher led the way. Fisher recently revealed that he’s experienced brain damage from his time served inside the UFC octagon. Now, other fighters including Maynard, are speaking out about the dangers as well.
The scariest part of mixed martial arts isn’t what happens inside of the cage. It’s the long-term after-effects from the damage acquired over the period of a long career. Since the sport is so new, there aren’t many case studies that highlight the permanent dangers of combat sports. However, former UFC fighter Spencer Fisher is currently permanently disabled and unable to work, seemingly due to brain injuries.
Maynard Speaks on Dangers of MMA
In a recent episode of The Bo & Glow MMA Show, Maynard spoke about the dangers of choosing mixed martial arts as a career. Additionally, he spoke on Fisher’s story, and how it inspired him to spearhead the conversation of dementia and other long-term diseases that can occur from the octagon.
“But then he told me he had the beginning stages of dementia, and I remember just, like, getting hit hard. Because … that really doesn’t get better. I mean, I had an uncle die of dementia. So I remember giving him a hug and like, ‘Hey, man, anything you need, I’m here for ya.’ And then just going in my car, and I started my car and was about to drive away, and I just started crying.,” said Maynard.
The Turning Point
“[I] just put it in park, and I was just crying, like, ‘Holy s**t.’ He’s got kids. There’s just a ton of emotions that are going through you because you know what he’s dealing with. It was hard. Just kind of seeing him, you know, want to get his life going and want to keep going, but it’s hard. It’s hard with dementia. It’s a gnarly disease, man.
“And so, after I’m driving home, I’m like getting pissed. I’m like, ‘Dude, why is this guy going through this like this. Why is he alone? Why [are] him and his wife alone with this?’ And it just started making me hate the UFC, and all those emotions, the title fight emotions, were coming back.
So far, the UFC can hang their hat on the fact that no fighter has ever sustained a permanent injury or death inside of the octagon. However, as the sport continues to grow, hopefully, the long-term health of fighters remains in-fact. With Fisher and Maynard sharing their experiences, it will be interesting to see who else comes forward and shares their experiences with the dangers of MMA.