UFC’s Tarec Saffiedine Hoping to Avoid Surgery, Plans to “Train Smart” After Latest Injury Setback
By Kelsey Mowatt
UFC Fight Night 60 went down last weekend, but what didn’t take place, was a welterweight fight between contenders Matt Brown and Tarec Saffiedine. Several weeks prior, it was announced that the latter had suffered a groin injury, and Saffiedine has been sidelined ever since.
“The past three years have kind of been a roller coaster for me, as far as fighting and injuries,” Saffiedine relayed on Full Contact Fighter’s podcast recently. “The past few years have been pretty tough.”
Since Saffiedine outscored Nate Marquardt to become Strikeforce champion in January, 2013, the vaunted striker has competed only twice. Following that victory, Saffiedine didn’t return to action until January, 2014, when he outscored Hyun Gyu Lim in what was his Octagon debut. Another ten months went by before Saffiedine fought again, when he faced Rory MacDonald at UFC FN 54.
“I had to pull out against Matt (Brown) because I had a groin injury, and I’m still healing from it,” the 28 year-old, Belgian fighter reported. “I saw the doctor yesterday and I have to see him again in two, three weeks, to go see if I have to go for surgery or not. Hopefully, crossing fingers and knocking on wood, I won’t have to. So I can give you a real update in two weeks, but right now I’m still healing.”
During Saffiedine’s run with Strikeforce, the welterweight competed twice annually in 2010, 2011, and 2012. In 2010, in fact, Saffiedine fought three times, as he also competed for Shark Fights. But, as noted, in recent years the 15-4 fighter has had a tough time staying healthy.
“I’ve made a lot of mistakes the past few years as far as training, as far as overtraining,” said Saffiedine, when asked why he believes injuries have been such a persistent issue. “Not giving the proper rest to my body after the fight. Usually I would give a couple of days and then go right back into training full mode, and not giving the time to my body to rest.”
“You know, all those years, for the past few years, I’ve been training really, really hard here at Team Quest” added Saffiedine. “It’s taken a toll on my body and today I kind of pay a price for it, getting injured back-to-back it’s not fun. I would let anybody know, who started MMA or training hard, listen to your body. Don’t train hard. Train smart.”
The latest injury also took place not long after Saffiedine was stopped by MacDonald in October.
“When I look back, I’m not really happy with the performance I put on,” said Saffiedine, when asked for his thoughts on the loss. “It should have been the other way around, but it is, what it is. I learned a lot from that fight…”
“I went in with the right game plan, I just didn’t stick to it,” added Saffiedine, who didn’t want to elaborate on his strategy for MacDonald, in case the two meet again. “I didn’t listen to my coaches. I didn’t do what I was supposed to do. There’s nothing to take away from Rory. I didn’t do what I had to do and it was his moment I guess, it wasn’t mine…”