According to an interview with Sherdog.com:
"This is one of the biggest cards of the year, and I was in the co-main event, and I was really trying to make sure my knee was better. The UFC really pushed me hard to get through with my rehab so I could fight on this card."
"My doctors said I shouldn’t fight again until February or March, but I stepped up because the UFC wanted me to. I stepped up for the UFC, and I hoped they would do the same for me."
"The thing is nobody wants to fight a fat guy like me… CroCop is a legend in this sport, and I would’ve loved to have fought him. I’d like to fight [Antonio Rodrigo] Nogueira for the same reason. I’d love to fight [Alistair] Overeem, Brock Lesnar or The Undertaker."