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Francisco Trinaldo explains why he tried to pull out of UFC Sao Paulo fight with Evan Dunham

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MMA: UFC Fight Night-Sao Paulo-Trinaldo vs Dunham
Francisco Trinaldo stopped Evan Dunham with a knee in Sao Paulo.
Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports

SAO PAULO, Brazil — Francisco Trinaldo scored a devastating knockout over Evan Dunham at UFC Sao Paulo on Saturday night, but it came after he nearly out of the bout during his training camp.

Speaking with the media at the Ibirapuera Gymnasium moments after his knockout win, “Massaranduba” said he broke a tooth a few weeks before the fight, and asked his manager to inform the UFC he wouldn’t be able to fight.

”I spent a week with toothache, trained but couldn’t sleep,” Trinaldo said. “I called my manager four times asking him to cancel the fight, but every time I’m going to do something I call my brother for advice, and he told me to go to the dentist because he would work this out.”

”I knew I would win this fight,” he continued. “It was the worst pain in my life. To wake up four times in one week to cancel the fight, you know, but thank God my brother told me not to cancel the fight and the victory came.”

Victorious with a well-timed knee to the liver at age 40, Trinaldo says he still have a lot left in his MMA career.

”I like to train with younger fighters because I like to beat up younger fighters,” Trinaldo said. “They say I’m old, but that’s not what they see. Ask them. I train like them, three times a day, and the day my body can’t take it anymore I’ll stop. As long as I’m fighting at a high level, you’ll never see me tired.

”I train hard because I want to be one of the best. I want to show that someone that came from the bottom can be one of the best. I want to give my best here to those who like me.”

Back to the winning column in impressive fashion, “Massaranduba” reiterates his desire to rematch Kevin Lee. The Brazilian lightweight says he has evolved a lot since a submission defeat to Lee in March 2017, and that loss is still stuck in his throat.

”I want you guys to help me get this fight with Kevin Lee,” Trinaldo told reporters. “I want to put on a great fight with him. I want to beat him up badly and submit him. I’ll fight him anywhere in the world. Anywhere. I just want to beat him.”