‘He didn’t even flinch’: Former Olympian Khetag Pliev loses FINGER in MMA fight, asks crowd to help him find it (GRAPHIC PHOTOS)
Anyone who has spent enough time watching mixed martial arts will have seen their fare share of injuries. A broken arm here, a burst cauliflower ear there – but Russian-born Canadian former Olympic freestyle wrestler Khetag Pliev significantly raised the stakes during a bout in Philadelphia on Thursday after his left ring-finger became entirely detached from his hand.
The gruesome injury occurred early in a middleweight fight against Devin Goodale as part of the CFFC 94 fight card which was being broadcast live on the UFC's streaming platform, UFC Fight Pass.
Pliev, who is a four-time national wrestling champion and is known as 'The Terminator', joined his team to begin searching for the missing digit – with the ring announcer even asking the audience to search around the arena for it. Eventually, the finger was located inside his glove and subsequently reattached in hospital.
Warning: graphic photos
Bizarrely, Goodale was awarded the win after the referee called off the fight – with MMA archive website Sherdog listing the method of victory as 'Detached Finger'.
Perhaps even more curiously, no one seems to know exactly what prompted Pliev's finger to entirely detach from his hand.
"They just made a PA announcement at #CFFC94 that they are trying to locate a fighter’s missing finger," wrote MMA reporter Aaron Bronsteter on Twitter.
They just made a PA announcement at #CFFC94 that they are trying to locate a fighter's missing finger.It evidently fell off into his glove during the bout and is missing somewhere in the venue.— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) April 2, 2021
Toronto's Khetag Pliev went to the corner between rounds and noticed that his finger was missing.Colour commentator @CMPunk: "It wasn't a compound fracture, a break, it wasn't a dislocation, a break, a laceration. His finger was just gone. It's gone."— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) April 2, 2021
Per CFFC President Rob Haydak on the broadcast, Pliev's finger was found inside his glove. I'm told that he was transported to the hospital to have it reattached.— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) April 2, 2021
"It evidently fell off into his glove during the bout and is missing somewhere in the venue.
Former UFC fighter and WWE champion CM Punk, who was on commentary duties at the event, summed up the incident. "It wasn't a compound fracture, a break," he said.
"It wasn't a dislocation, a break, a laceration. His finger was just gone. It's gone."
Goodale, Pliev's opponent in the fight, couldn't offer any further clarity as to how the injury occurred.
"I can’t remember anything — I don’t know," he said after being awarded the victory.
"I got hit by something big, I don’t remember what happened. I’m just being honest. I don’t remember what happened. I’ll have to watch the tape myself: I don’t remember anything."
Update from Pliev: “All good 🤙🏻” pic.twitter.com/TeVI5ZPzuh— Marc Raimondi (@marc_raimondi) April 2, 2021
37-year-old Pliev, whose career record fell to 5-2 as a result of the defeat, told ESPN that he wanted to continue fighting despite the injury.
But CFFC president Rob Haydak says that he quickly nixed any such ideas and demanded that his fighter seek immediate medical attention.
"It was crazy. He didn't even flinch," he said afterwards. "He was getting ready to do the [official] decision and I was like, 'Uh, guys, get him out of the cage and go put his finger back on'."Also on rt.com 'It was hanging off my head': MMA fighter Johnny Campbell shares grisly details as his ear is almost RIPPED OFF in fight