Matt Wiman took nearly a two-year long hiatus from the UFC after his loss to TJ Grant at UFC on Fox in January of 2013. Earlier this month Wiman returned from his hiatus and defeated Issac Vallie-Flagg via unanimous decision.
Following the quick disappearance, and sudden reappearance of Wiman, fans had questions regarding whether or not Wiman would continue fighting after his bout with Vallie-Flagg.
He spoke on The MMA Hour:
I didn’t feel that rusty to be honest with you, I don’t know what it was. I think maybe the nervousness of it all was the hardest part. Getting through the nerves of that it’s actually happening, anticipating something every night for four months, because I knew about the fight probably four months in advance. It’s a daunting thing, you know? I go in there prepared for whatever. You might have to fight with your arm being broken, or fighting somebody who is trying to knock you unconscious trying to steal your will. It’s a hard thing to get up for.”
“After several of my fights I’ve said, ‘I don’t think I’m ever doing that again,’ because it takes a lot out of you and sometimes is crazier than you feel like you can handle. It’s a little hard to handle sometimes. And then you’re like, in hindsight that was a pretty crazy experience…maybe I’ll do that again. But after several of my fights I’ve said I don’t know if I’ll do it again, it’s not healthy, it’s not sustainable, it’s like crazy, madness.”
“So after that [Grant] fight, I think I was, I was just swimming upstream too long. Everybody deals with injury in the sport, but I think I just ignored my body for too long and just pushed through injuries. So I said to myself, I’m going to fix up my body a bit and see what happens.”
“It’s silly, you have all these fears. I talked to Brian Stann, and he said he had the same questions, these little things that pop up in your head, ‘do you have it anymore?’ You always have to prove to yourself [that you do]. You have to constantly reinvent yourself and make sure you have it, make sure you’re still working as hard, make sure you’re still capable, and not only that, but make sure you’re better.”
“It’s a hard thing. I tried to leave that door open. And eventually I started getting healthier, and started getting kind of itchy, and I’ve got to do something. I’ve got to make money and do something, and I thought, you know what, I have a career, and I actually like my career. So there I was training for another fight.”
When asked if he was back, Wiman explained:
“I think so, yeah. This is what’s humbling, is like I think I’m big and tough…there’s some nights I can’t sleep because my toe is so painful. Suffering from a broken toe. And that’s annoying. Your quality of life is just obnoxious. That wasn’t the injury that I needed surgery on, but that was the one that humbled me. It’s like, you can’t sleep because your toe hurts, really? I need to get up tomorrow morning and spar.”