Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva may be the pound-for-pound best mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter in the world, but one of the most lethal fighters on the planet is a big teddy bear when it comes to his young fans.
Joao Pedro, 12, who is being treated for Epiphysiolysis -- the loosening or separation of an epiphysis from the shaft of a bone -- got the surprise of a lifetime when "The Spider," who is also among his doctor's patients, paid him a visit at Brazilian hospital. Pedro had initially requested an autograph, but clearly, he got much more than just a signature.
After the doctor asks him who his favorite fighters are -- to which the boy responded "Minotauro" and Anderson Silva -- the 185-pound UFC champion appears and showers him with gifts and some words of encouragement:
"What's up, brother? Don't cry, come here and give me a hug. Don't cry, is everything fine? You want to get well soon! Give me a hug, give me a hug, a really strong one. Let's get well, let's get well. Let's take a picture. Look what I brought for you, signed glove, this is for you. Look, let me tell you something. You're going to have to do something really important for all of us. Give all you got. Give 100 percent effort so you can get well really quick because Minotauro also had the same problem and he's fighting again, you know what I mean? So you got to give it all you got, ok? I talked to the doctor to talk to Dr. Angela, who was taking care of Minotauro, so she can help you out also so you can go back to training as soon as possible, okay?"
After Joao thanks him, Silva offers few more words:
"I'm the one thankful for being here. Let's get well. No crying, be happy. Let's get well so we can train. Do you promise me that? That's a deal. Let's roll when you get well ... but don't choke the old man."
The young boy -- who trains in jiu-jitsu and is an avid Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Silva supporter and fight fan -- has been wheelchair-bound for nine months and doctors are unsure if he will be able to walk again after already undergoing two surgeries.
The meeting was arranged by Dr. Eduardo Picanco, who says it was an Easter present for Joao.