It’s still uncertain if Kaue Mena’s road to recovery ends in an MMA cage, but that’s his ultimate goal.
An undefeated featherweight prospect from Pelotas, Brazil, Kaue Mena (7-0, 1 no-contest) was brutally attacked by several men in a gas station in Itajai, Santa Catarina on July 5, 2013, after Mena’s teammate Maiquel Falcao was involved in a brawl after slapping a woman in the face.
Mena was rushed to the hospital after being hit several times with a piece of wood to the head, and had to undergo several surgeries. The MMA fighter was released from hospital early in December, and plans to fight again.
"I’m fine," Mena told MMAFighting.com. "Everything is fine. I’m doing physical therapy, but I can’t wait to fight again. I’m waiting for it."
Doctors aren’t sure yet if he will be able to return to the cage. Mena lost 70 percent of his vision in one eye and had part of his skull reattached four months after the incident. Mena's vision is back to normal, and he's confident that his family will support him if he decides to fight again one day if cleared by the doctors.
"This (decision) is up to me," he said, "but I believe they will support me."
According to Mena’s younger brother, Kaua Mena, there’s no timetable for his brother to be 100 percent again.
"There’s no timetable because it’s a long recovery," he said. "My brother does physical therapy once a day, seven days a week. If he gets better in a few months, the doctor will see if he can fight again. I believe that my brother will want to fight again.
"The doctor said he’ll have a normal life from now on, but we’re not sure yet if he’ll be able to come back to MMA. His memory is getting better every day. The only thing he needs now is to be able to walk perfectly again. We’re positive that he’ll be able to do that really soon."
Falcao, who initiated the brawl last July, fought for the first time since the incident on Feb. 15, scoring a second-round submission win over Dibir Zagirov in Ukraine, and Kaue Mena has no hard feelings for his ex-teammate.
"I always talk to him. We’re cool," he said. "I heard he won a fight a couple weeks ago."
Sources close to the situation told MMAFighting.com that Mena and Falcao are treated as the victims in the process in Santa Catarina, and four men are accused of attempted murder, but neither Mena’s brother nor Falcao’s manager Marcelo Brigadeiro had more information about the case.