— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) February 20, 2016
Dada 5000 was left in a critical condition following his defeat to Kimbo Slice at Bellator 149.
Dada, real name Dhafir Harris, has been reported by ESPN as suffering from ‘extremely high levels of potassium in his blood’, leading to severe dehydration, exhaustion, and renal failure.
The initial response to Friday’s main event was largely of disappointment following Dada’s stumbling collapse to the canvas, but that concern was present as the Miami brawler was stretchered away from the octagon.
Dada 5000 taken out on a stretcher. This is the danger of putting a fight like this on. pic.twitter.com/H69C7lcnM4
— Marissa Rives (@mrivesx3) February 20, 2016
Bellator released the following statement from Harris’ family to clarify just what had happened to the heavyweight fighter.
According to MMA Fighting it read:
The Harris Family would like to inform Dada’s friends and fans that Dada is ok and resting comfortably in a Houston area Hospital under the care of an incredible staff of doctors and nurses. The doctors have now informed us that Dada had accumulated extremely high levels of potassium in his blood which led to severe dehydration, fatigue and renal failure. The high potassium levels were likely caused by his 40lbs weight loss in preparation for the fight. Thanks to the EMTs and doctors, Dada is now recovering nicely.
Dada showed the heart of a lion in the cage- not backing down throughout. He worked extremely hard preparing for the fight and stepped forward for 3 rounds against a tough veteran. He kept digging through the adversity- leaving it all in the cage for his fans and supporters. You can never take that away from him. We’d like to thank all those who have supported Dada as well as express our sincere appreciation to Scott Coker, and the good people at BELLATOR and Spike who have been on-site to visit Dada and support the family.
BREAKING: Multiple sources confirm Dhafir Harris was in critical condition overnight. His heart stopped and he was placed on a ventilator.
— Jeremy Botter (@jeremybotter) February 20, 2016
Neither Slice or Dada appeared to possess considerable cardio fitness during the fight, and now fans and pundits are highlighting that as a potential cause of the latter’s health scare.
Many are questioning how Bellator and medics gave the fighters clearance for the bout.
@jeremybotter This is horrible. His recklessness could’ve killed him. How could he get cleared by the TDLR, and does Bellator do medicals?
— Richard Di Biase (@bundesautobahn7) February 20, 2016
@jeremybotter Suddenly it’s no longer funny. Big lessons to be learned I hope.
— Bang Bets MMA (@MMAtipsandbets) February 20, 2016
Adding further confusion to matters, Dada’s manager has appeared on Twitter questioning the reports and statements released regarding his condition.
Mike Vasquez’ account appears to contradict online reports that his client went into cardiac arrest and needed breathing assistance.
— Mike Vazquez (@MikeFCV) February 20, 2016
Ok. I guess I spent the night in the wrong hospital room. https://t.co/GWxRGcejeI
— Mike Vazquez (@MikeFCV) February 20, 2016Advertisement
Vasquez has since told ESPN that Dada will remain in hospital for a ‘day or two’, although his condition is now reportedly stable.
According to MMA Fighting Dada has been placed on indefinite medical suspension, while Slice must serve a 60 day suspension.
Serious questions must now be answered regarding the types of fights professional organisations stage in the future, and the criteria combatants must fulfill in order to be cleared to fight.