If you’re familiar with Don Frye, you know the MMA veteran is in the UFC Hall of Fame for good reason.
“The Predator” fought in the early days of the UFC, making his professional debut at UFC 8 where he fought three different men in one night in a David vs. Goliath tournament, beating all three of his bigger opponents in the first round. The American’s skill and spirit made him a favorite amongst the fans from the early days of MMA.
However, many fans may not know of Frye’s recent darker days as he recently spent two-and-a-half months in the hospital, spending much of that time in a medically induced coma.
“I went in there for my back,” Frye told Ariel Helwani on last week’s episode of The MMA Hour of his time spent in the hospital (transcribed by Dave Meltzer of MMA Fighting). “I broke the rod in my back, and then I had some kind of hemorrhage in my brain. And then they put me in a medically induced coma for a while, and then I had pneumonia, and something else I can’t remember.”
With just coming out of the medically induced coma, Frye was not in the best state of mind to be getting all the information from his doctors.
“It’s all stuff they’re telling me after they woke me up,” he said.
“I’ve been awake for ten days,” Frye said. “Before that, I was out for two months so I don’t know what’s going on. It’s like a whole new world for me. It was terrible.”
“The Predator,” said that he had surgery in 2013 where ten vertebrae were fused in his back. With his back giving him problems over recent years following the surgery, Frye finally went back to the hospital and got his back checked out.
“They saw in the X-ray that I had broken the rod,” said the MMA pioneer. “I had broken the rod a year or two earlier, and then I had a bacterial infection and I had a really high fever. I was always sweating and I didn’t know why. I had a fever due to the infection in my spine.”
While 2016 was a tough year going through a divorce and then battling his medical conditions, Frye said his induction into the UFC Hall of Fame really helped bring some good in his life despite all the problems he had faced this year.
“It was great,” he said. “It was f***ing great. It saved my life. It was something that happened at the right time.”