Former UFC lightweight fighter Spencer Fisher is disabled after giving us years in the Octagon and now, former opponent and friend, Sam Stout is lending a helping hand.
Fisher fought professionally from 2002-2012, 17 of those bouts with the UFC. Fisher won his debut fight against UFC veteran Thiago Alves at Ultimate Fight Night 2.
He’d go on to win his second bout over Aaron Riley after a doctor stoppage when the fighter broke the jaw of his opponent.
Spencer Fisher Fights Sam Stout Three Times
Fisher fought Sam Stout in his third bout at UFC 58. Fisher took the fight on late notice after Kenny Florian pulled out of the bout after an injury during training. The fight went all the way, coming down to Stout winning by split decision.
Fisher would go on to fight Stout two more times, winning one of the matches. The second match between the two fighters showed impeccable skill and fighting heart. The fight put Fisher’s name in the spotlight and earned Fight of the Night honors. It earned a spot in the UFC 100’s Greatest Fights.
The third and final bout between the pair took place June 12, 2012, with Stout coming out victorious. Fisher decided to retire after this fight.
Spencer Fisher Disabled: Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy Diagnosis
Not long after announcing he would retire from the sport, Fisher changed his mind. A fight was set against Yves Edwards for UFC on Fox 8. Sadly, Fisher was removed from the bout due to injury. It was later revealed that the injury was actually chronic traumatic encephalopathy, the result of multiple concussive head injuries sustained during his career as an MMA competitor.
After doctors declared Spencer Fisher disabled and unable to fight, he was forced to retire from the UFC.
As of January 2021, Fisher can no longer perform basic daily tasks and suffers from regular depression, extreme dizziness, forgetfulness, and headaches. His wife Emily retired and works with Spencer full time helping him.
White Responds to Fisher’s Injuries
UFC President Dana White responded to questions concerning Fisher’s condition by stating “he’s not the first and he’s definitely not going to be the last (to suffer as a result of neurological injuries.) This is a contact sport and anybody who’s done this younger, myself included, is dealing with brain issues. It’s part of the gig.”
Researchers at the American Academy of Neurology studied the brains of more than 200 fighters and boxers. Their research found indications of a connection between the duration of a fighter’s career and significant degradation in certain areas of the brain. After five years, no noticeable changes were noted in the brain. Fighters sustained massive brain volume loss when fighting for longer periods.
Stout Starts GoFundMe for Fisher
Sam Stout took it upon himself to help his former opponent, who now struggles financially since his wife left her job to care for him full time The couple has three daughters together.
Stout began a GoFundMe fundraiser for his friend and former opponent. He set a $2,000 goal, but by Wednesday evening, had raised more than $8,000. Stout said he is excited that Fisher will get the help, but that it is only a short-term fix for the former UFC fighter. Stout says the GFM page will stay up for several more weeks.
Stout also told reporters he is glad that he can help, but that it provides short-term help for Fisher. Stout further said that he thinks the UFC should do more for the long-term health of fighters, especially those who are dealing with brain injuries.
If you would like to donate to the Spencer Fisher disabled fundraiser, click here.
Do you think UFC should offer fighters more long-term health benefits?
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