Joe Ellenberger On His Blood Disease: 'It's Not How I Envisioned Things Going'
Posted by Jeremy Thomas on 06.24.2014
But he's still pressing on...
Joe Ellenberger recently spoke with MMAjunkie about fighting despite having a rare blood disease called paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria. Check out the highlights:
On getting offered a UFC contract soon after being diagnoses: "It wasn't the way I'd envisioned things going. But here I am."
On making sure he could get licensed before agreeing to a UFC deal: "They did some pretty rigorous testing just to make sure that, if I were signed, I could pass medicals anywhere they'd need me. I'd been through it with the Nebraska commission and places like that, but they don't just fight in one state. They wanted to know that I could fight in Brazil, Canada, Nevada, New Jersey, California – wherever. I just made sure that I had all my I's dotted and my T's crossed to make sure that when the time came, they'd know I could get cleared."
On being an inspiration to others: "If I can fight in the UFC, it shows that we can overcome a lot of this adversity we've been dealt. We just have to do it the right way, and not give up."