Vieira (8-1 MMA, 3-1 UFC) returns to the octagon on Saturday’s ESPN-televised predominant card on the UFC Apex for a middleweight conflict with Curtis (28-8 MMA, 2-0 UFC). It’s his first battle since July, and comes on the heels of his withdrawal from a scheduled bout at UFC 270 in January.
The rationale Vieira needed to pull out of his battle towards Wellington Turman earlier this yr was on account of a problem that appeared on a mind scan. In line with the Brazilian, it virtually introduced his profession to a screeching halt.
“I had an issue on my mind – a malformation,” Vieira instructed MMA Junkie and different reporters at Wednesday’s UFC on ESPN 38 media day. “It’s one thing that I used to be born with, so I didn’t know if it was severe or one thing regular. However the physician mentioned that I used to be going to have the ability to preserve combating and that made me very comfortable, as a result of I used to be actually afraid to need to retire.
“I used to be positive that I must cease combating. I used to be ready for the worst, and thank God that it didn’t occur, and I’m right here and I’m going to battle on Saturday.”
Though Vieira skilled a scare nobody ought to need to endure, he mentioned it proved to be a revelation. It made him all of the extra grateful he’s capable of proceed his ardour, and solely enhanced his motivation and dedication for this battle and past.
“The nice half is that this problem made me notice how a lot I wish to preserve doing MMA,” Vieira mentioned. “Even with all of the concern and anxiousness.”
Vieira mentioned there’s no secret as to his sport plan for his comeback battle with Curtis. The embellished jiu-jitsu specialist has a transparent sport plan to get each opponent he fights to the bottom, and he mentioned issues shall be no totally different when he steps into the octagon with Curtis.
“Chris is a harmful opponent, a really harmful striker,” Vieira mentioned. “He’s coming off possibly six or seven wins in a row. He’s robust. He’s a monster and it’s going to be an honor to share the cage with a man like him. It’s going to be his placing towards my jiu-jitsu. It’s no secret.”