A nasty weight cut may have caused another fighter’s heart to stop…

Clovis “CJ” Hancock went into cardiac arrest and collapsed during his bout with Carlie Ontiveros last night at LFA 26. He was revived on route to the hospital where doctors told him he can never fight again.

The bout took place in Houston, Texas and was presided over by the Texas Athletic Commission, the same commission which presided over the controversial Kimbo Slice vs. Dada 5000 bout in 2016.

Those in attendance are reporting Hancock appeared to suffer a seizure and collapsed in the 2nd round.

The fighter was motionless and not breathing in the cage. Paramedics issued CPR in the ambulance on-route to hospital. They shocked him with the EKG twice and were able to get him breathing and conscious again.

Weight Cut To Blame?

MMA coach, Steven Wright, tweeted out the following during the event.

Fortunately, Hancock did not die as a result of his medical emergency as Wright heard, though he wasn’t far from it.

Hancock would later release a statement mentioning he had a hard weight cut and doctors told him his kidneys had shut down.

“Well I Died tonight in the cage… I’m okay. Thanks everyone. I’ll reply when I can. My heart stopped, and I had kidney failure, they did cpr and hit me with the EKG twice and brought me back. Still unsure why it happened. I had a hard weight cut. Doc says I shouldn’t fight again…I’m broken, I guess I’ll just be a coach from now on…. I still plan on competing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and BJJ superfights, when I get better. Thanks to everyone that supported me!

His account is eerily similar to what doctors said to Dada5000 after he recovered from cardiac arrest and kidney failure following his bout with Kimbo Slice.

This incident will no doubt add fuel to the ongoing debate regarding the safety of weight cutting in combat sports.

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Texas State Athletic Commission

That the bout took place in the same city as Dada5000 vs. Kimbo is not insignificant. The Texas State Athletic Commission approved both Kimbo and Dada5000 to fight that night. One fighter almost died of heart failure in the cage and the other would be dead of it just months later.

Dada5000’s kidneys also shut down during his bout and this is largely believed to have been from a tough weight cut. Cardiac arrest is a known potential occurrence in cases of patients experiencing kidney failure.

This incident is further evidence that the most dangerous part of MMA is not the fight itself but the damage done during the weight-cut. While the debate over making changes to weigh-in procedures continues, we’ve yet to see substantial changes (earlier weigh-in times perhaps..) made for the sake of fighter safety.

Medical Team Praised

The on-site medical team is being praised as having been quick to respond. The Legacy Fighting Alliance is also said to have had the medical team positioned well at the event.

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Ian is a MMA writer based out of Toronto, ON Canada. An avid mixed martial arts enthusiast and passionate fan since he was born, Ian has been writing about mixed martial arts for over 5 years.

1 COMMENT

  1. He will (like an idiot)fight again no doubt. Chances are that we will be reading about this same guy months from now, and how he was warned by doctors not to fight again, but did it anyways and wasn’t able to be revived a second time.

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