UFC heavyweight Shane Carwin announced via his own website today that he has pulled out of his UFC 125 bout with Roy Nelson.
I am going to pull out of the fight with Roy Nelson. As many of you know I have been having some back pain. I had an MRI yesterday and I have some damage that may really require surgery. If the doctors do not have to perform surgery then I will be out 8-12 weeks. If they do have to perform surgery I do not know how long I will be out of action.
Carwin said that he will be able continue training cardio while healing from surgery, which was clearly his Achilles heel in his UFC 116 loss to Brock Lesnar. If Cain Velasquez's win over Lesnar this past weekend said anything about the UFC's heavyweight division, it was that all fighters need a more complete game to be the champ, and that includes cardio. If Carwin wants to return to the title fight, it's smart for him to both get healthy and not ignore his endurance.
Losing this fight is a blow to UFC 125, a New Year's Day card in Las Vegas. The event is headlined by the lightweight championship bout between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard. Carwin is disappointed about having to pull off the card, tweeting, "Roy and my boss are the only ones happy about this."