Alistair Overeem had to contend with more than just dangerous slugger Mark Hunt at UFC 209. Leading up to his KO victory of Hunt Saturday night, Overeem also had to fight off a nasty case of food poisoning. UFC President Dana White broke the news at the post-fight press conference following the event, appearing briefly and telling the assembled media that he wanted to thank Overeem and tell him how much he respected the fighter for not pulling out of the event.
Said White during his brief appearance alongside Overeem at the press conference,
Did you know that he was sick? So, he’s been in the hospital for twenty-four hours. With food poisoning. Throwing up and all the other pleasantries of food poisoning. For twenty-four hours. He was in the hospital, we brought him home, and had to take him back to the hospital. They had to fill him with bags of fluids and IVs, at one point he was afraid to leave his room because he couldn’t stop throwing up and everything else. Did not wanna turn down the fight, still came out and fought tonight, and knocked out Mark Hunt. And more to his credit, didn’t say one word about it in his interview and obviously hadn’t said it here yet.
I just came in to thank him and tell him how much I respect him.
Overeem later confirmed that all the necessary protocols were followed to allow for him to receive an IV. USADA, which the UFC utilizes for it’s Anti-Doping Program, previously banned IVs for re-hydration following weight cuts.
Meanwhile, The Reem’s win over Hunt puts him in line for another big match-up later this Summer. While Dana White ruled out Francis Ngannou, Derek Lewis and others remain a possibility.