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Toothache almost removed Trinaldo from UFC Sao Paulo: ‘Worst pain of my life’

Lightweight Francisco Trinaldo almost pulled out of his bout against Evan Dunham due to an unusual reason.

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Sao Paulo-Trinaldo vs Dunham
Francisco Trinaldo
Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports

Although lightweight Franscisco Trinaldo ended up defeating Evan Dunham via body shot TKO at UFC Sao Paulo, the Brazilian veteran almost didn’t make it to the fight card at all. The reason, however, was somewhat unusual: a toothache.

In an interview for Combate, ‘Massaranduba’ confessed he experienced terrible pain when he broke a root canal and couldn’t train for an entire week. It was bad enough to make him consider pulling out of the bout several times.

“I broke a root canal, I spent one week with toothache,” Trinaldo admitted. “I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t train, I disappeared from the gym. I called my manager four times in the middle of the night, asking him to cancel the fight. My brother told me to go to the dentist, because it was just a toothache and the doctor could fix it. I knew I was going to win the fight because that toothache was the worst pain of my life. I woke up four times in the middle of the night to cancel a fight, you know? Thank God, it was a blessing in disguise. My brother told me not to cancel, I didn’t, and we won the fight.”

Now, with a hightlight reel TKO win under his belt, Trinaldo already has a next opponent in mind for his next bout. In fact, it’s someone who defeated him before: Kevin Lee.

According to the Brazilian, he wants to show that he lost their first encounter because he lost focus in the middle of the fight. And that it won’t happen that way twice.

“I want fans to help me get a rematch with Kevin Lee,” he said. “I really want to fight him, I want to beat him up. I’m asking for help because he came to Brazil, defeated me and talked trash to my fans. If I start talking crap to his fans, his mother or his father, I might (get the UFC’s interest). But I don’t like to do that, I’ll never call someone’s mom names. I want to fight him. I want to really go at it with him, beat him up and finish him. (In the first fight), I lost focus, I thought I had him and then he caught me with a kick and finished the fight. You know how it is, I caught Dunham with a knee and the fight was over. Nobody is invincible.”

Kevin Lee finished Francisco Trinaldo with a rear-naked choke, back in March 2017. Since the loss, the 40-year-old defeated fellow veteran Jim Miller, but dropped an unanimous decision to James Vick before his latest win against Dunham. Lee has followed a similar, albeit higher profile, trajectory. The ‘MoTown Phenom’ sandwiched an interim title fight loss to Tony Ferguson between victories over Michael Chiesa and Edson Barboza.