UFC star Diego Sanchez is probably the last fighter left from the old school era of fighting. Sanchez came up the ranks on the regional circuit where he had an unblemished record that was carried with him well into his UFC career.
The former TUF Season 1 winner has always been known for putting on some of the most exciting fights in UFC history. He’s had legendary wars with top fighters like Gilbert Melendez and Clay Guida, but Sanchez hasn’t been having the same success in his most recent outings.
Last weekend at UFC Fight Night 120, Diego returned to the octagon to face fellow UFC fan favorite Matt Brown. The fight ended swiftly and brutally for Sanchez as he was knocked out by a standing elbow in the first round.
Now a few days removed from the loss in Norfolk, Diego Sanchez reveals that he was suffering from a bad concussion going into the fight.
About a month prior to his fight with Matt Brown on Saturday, Sanchez was hurt by a training partner who got frustrated during their sparring session. A French grappler who was new to the team was the culprit who “cold cocked” Diego.
“It’s pretty bad, bro,” Sanchez was told by his teammate Keith Jardine.
“I felt a little cognitive decline; I felt my short-term memory was a little off,” he says. “And that freaked me out. Because even after all my wars and all my battles, I’d never had that…I probably had a mild concussion.”
“We used to train where we would bang and spar all the time, and if you had what we call a boxer’s headache, which is just a concussion, you’d just work through it,” Jackson admits. “Now we spar hard once a week if that, and even ‘hard’ isn’t like we used to do where you were basically trying to kill each other. People are a lot more aware.”