Last month, Paulo Filho was pulled at the last minute from his bout at Fatality Arena 7 after reportedly having a seizure.
Now Filho is speaking out about the incident, insisting that he didn’t have a seizure, but instead decided to respect himself by not fighting due to emotional issues. Filho, who has had a long battle with drug addiction, doesn’t want to retire, despite the incident leading up to his last fight.
He spoke with MMAFighting:
“I’m not an epileptic. I never had a seizure.”
“I was a mess. I decided not to use antidepressants, so it wouldn’t kill my reflexes, but I had a terrible day at home. My house looked like a party the day of the fight, lots of people going there. Nobody respected me. It was like Paulo Filho was going to bungee jump instead of getting into a fight, get punched and kicked in the face. I couldn’t focus. My house was like hell that day.”
“I didn’t want to take medication, so I had a panic attack. I lay down in my bedroom, thinking what I would do. I just froze. I couldn’t move. And for the first time in my life, I respected myself. When things like that happened before, I kept going and fought, and it didn’t end well. People watched me fight like crap and had no idea what had happened. So I decided to respect myself this time.”
“I agreed to fight because I needed the money. That’s the truth. But I was depressed, I was feeling low. I’ve been trying to find a way to get better, so I gave myself another opportunity. I’m not taking anything away from Amilcar, he’s a great athlete, and a fight is a fight, but inside my head I always think I’m going to win.”
“That’s how I came to the conclusion that this fight wouldn’t be so important for me. Maybe that was important for Amilcar. Maybe. Maybe not. Honestly, and bringing myself down by saying this, it wouldn’t be important for Amilcar either. If he goes there and beats me, that means nothing. A bunch of nobodies, who haven’t fought anywhere, defeated me via decision when I wasn’t ready. That doesn’t mean shit. The thing is, I wasn’t motivated for this. I didn’t care about it. I just wanted to chill, relax with my birds, my dogs, and walk on the beach with my friends.”
“I did several exams recently, a complete blood count, and the doctor said I’m 100 percent. My issue is a psychological issue. I need a good psychiatrist who can get me back to normal. I can’t stay like a roller coaster. I love strawberries, but one second later, I hate strawberries. I’m like that now. It’s hard to be an athlete with pathologies like that.”
“Unfortunately, I lost more of the credibility that I had left, but I won’t give up. I can’t do this by myself. I always had someone pushing me, and that’s what I need. I don’t have a reason to stop fighting.”