Back on September 1st, MMA legend Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira announced his retirement at a press conference Rio de Janeiro, exiting the sport at the age of 39.
To say that Nogueira has had several wars in his career would be an understatement. During a roundtable discussion promoted by Dr. Marcio Tannure at the 2015 Rio Sports & Health conference in Rio de Janeiro on Oct. 18, Nogueira discussed his injuries that he has sustained in his career and dropped a gem worth of information. According to Nogueira, he’s had a total of 22 surgeries in his career.
“I have done a total of 22 surgeries; I’m all broken,”Nogueira said. “I started my surgery career early, at 11 years old when I was hit by the truck. However, the last five years were more difficult. I had eight surgeries. I have 16 metal screws in my right arm, from the elbow to the shoulder, and they are extremely painful at the beginning of a training camp and also when the temperature changes. I also had a surgery on my left arm and two on my hips. Those four surgeries were pivotal in my decision to retire.”
He leaves a career that spanned 17 years and stretched across several different eras of the sport.
Also during this roundtable discussion, Tannure revealed that Nogueira had fought Roy Nelson in April 2014 with a torn knee ligament. That fight saw Nelson knock out Nogueira in the first round.
“When I arrived in Abu Dhabi for fight week, ‘Minotauro’ came to me and said, ‘Doctor, I was sparring yesterday when I heard a snap. I think something happened,’” Tannure said. “This was three days before the fight, and he entered the Octagon barely able to walk. I told him that few human beings would be able to fight with such strong pain. This guy is definitely a cyborg.”
He is currently serving as an Athlete Relations Ambassador for the UFC in Brazil.