“Nogueira had some other problems too going into [UFC 92]. Nogueira had just gotten over a Staph infection and he had some other problems but when they fought in PRIDE, PRIDE put on such freak shows, guys fighting out of their weight class, things like that. That’s why I’m so against it. That’s how you ruin guys early. If you’re a professional athlete, time is not good to you. Time catches us all.”
Straight from the mouth of UFC President Dana White regarding the possible reason as to why Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira did not appear to be at 100% health and functioning capacity during his Interim Heavyweight Championship fight against Frank Mir at UFC 92: The Ultimate 2008 on December 27th. I will not say it's a full excuse as to why Nogueira lost to Mir but it is something to keep an eye on as to why he may have lost the way that he did. Who knows if Mir would finish him if Nogueira was truly 100% or even win at all but staph infections are no laughing matter.
We'll see whether or not Nogueira can fully recover from this catastrophe anytime soon in order to fight Randy Couture, which at this point is nothing more than a pure rumor. But the fact that Nogueira was not at 100% for his fight with Mir is quite disturbing. Kudos to him for still going through with the fight but who were the people giving him advice about doing so? Staph infections, like I stated earlier, are no small thing.
I wish Nogueira the best in his recovery and now maybe we have at least a partial answer as to why Nogueira did not seem himself.