Former UFC fighter Tim Hague has died. The former UFC star retired from mixed martial arts to pursue a career in boxing. The 34-year-old died on Sunday following a knockout in his last boxing match.
Hague was left with a traumatic brain injury following Friday’s loss. The severe brain injury left the fighter staggering and dazed when leaving the ring. Classic symptoms of a brain injury include: disorientation, loss of consciousness, fatigue, blurred vision, being dazed and vomiting, among many others.
Hague lost his final boxing match in Edmonton at the Shaw Conference Centre during the second round, when a left hook from Adam Braidwood sent Hague to the ground.
Referees stopped the fight as Hague’s head hit the canvas and the fighter remained motionless. The fighter was knocked down three times in the first round and two times in the second prior to the fatal blow.
The boxing match did not follow the three knockdown rule during the fight, where the match is called off after a fighter is knocked to the canvas three times.
The fighter was able to walk out of the ring, showing signs of a clear injury before being rushed to the hospital. His medical team quickly decided to conduct brain surgery to relieve the pressure on Hague’s brain.
Doctors and medical personnel said that they knew Hague needed serious medical help the moment he went backstage.
Tim took the fight on short notice and wasn’t originally scheduled to fight Braidwood on Friday night.
Braidwood spoke to CTV News, calling his celebration “stupid” and saying that he knew Hague would die following the knockout.
“I just saw the way he fell,” said the heavyweight. Braidwood said that Hague was a warrior and admired his will to fight on during the lopsided match.
“I’ll be honest with you, I was like, it’s time to stop this fight. I was hoping Tim would stop it himself,” said Braidwood. The boxer said “it is nobody’s fault.” Hague wanted to continue the fight against Braidwood, the top ranked boxer in western Canada.
Braidwood has been in contact with his opponent’s family, which has forgiven him for the incident, stating that it was “not his fault.” He has encouraged fans and friends to help the Hague family in any way that they can and said “nobody wanted this.”
Tim fell into a coma following his surgery. Hague signed on with the UFC in 2009. He went on to win four matches in a row and win the heavyweight championship for King of the Cage Canada. He would lose his next four fights and ended his MMA career with a 21-13 record. The fighter lost four matches in the last 22 months all by knockout.
Hague’s family broke the news of his passing on Sunday morning with a social media post stating, “It is with incredible sadness, sorrow and heartbreak to report that Tim has passed away today.”
His family continued, “He was surrounded by family, listening to his favorite songs. We will miss him so greatly. We ask for privacy during this difficult time.”