Former No. 1 heavyweight contender Shane Carwin was forced to pull out of his UFC 125 co-main event fight on Jan. 1 with "The Ultimate Fighter 10" winner Roy Nelson due to a back injury, Carwin posted on his blog at Shane-Carwin.com on Tuesday.
I am going to pull out of the fight with Roy Nelson. As many of you know I have been having some back pain. I had an MRI yesterday and I have some damage that may really require surgery. If the doctors do not have to perform surgery then I will be out 8-12 weeks. If they do have to perform surgery I do not know how long I will be out of action.
I was really looking forward to fighting again and obviously this is a very disappointing turn of events. My manager said "You can't fight the best fighters in the world with just heart, it is time to stop limping to the top of the mountain and get healthy so you can climb it on your terms." I have been up all night thinking about this decision and what I may be missing by making it.
In the end my family and manager are right. I owe myself, I owe my fans the best show I can give them. I need to get healthy. I am going to be speaking with the surgeon this week about the surgery. My thoughts are if the surgery fixes it why add 8-12 weeks of physical therapy, epidurals and traction if surgery may still be needed.
It will be interesting to see who the UFC finds as a replacement. You'd have to expect them to take a look at either Frank Mir or Mirko Cro Cop first or maybe someone like Pat Barry. This is an interesting scenario where the UFC needs another big-name heavyweight to fill in in a big spot. Losing Carwin, though, is a huge loss for this card.
Carwin is coming off a second-round submission loss to Brock Lesnar in July at UFC 116.