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Midnight Mania! Robert Whittaker reportedly pulled out of UFC 248 to donate bone marrow to his daughter

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UFC 243 Whittaker v Adesanya Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images

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It can be difficult to makes heads or tails of a situation when a fighter pulls out from a fight due to personal reasons. That could be code for injury, mental health issues, a USADA problem yet to surface, relationship drama and much more — any and all of these factors can more than derail a training camp.

Such was the case when Robert Whittaker recently withdrew from his UFC 248 bout opposite Jared Cannonier. Whittaker was vague on Instagram, and he has talked about his issues with both injury and mental health in the past.

Just yesterday, UFC President Dana White described his withdraw as “selfless,” an unusual description that now makes plenty of sense. The Sun reported today that Whittaker removed himself from the bout in order to donate bone marrow to his daughter, who is ill.

For those unaware, here’s a description of the process courtesy of BeTheMatch.org: “Donating bone marrow is a surgical procedure done under general or regional anesthesia in a hospital. While a donor receives anesthesia, doctors use needles to withdraw liquid marrow from the back of the pelvic bone.” It has a reputation of being rather painful, and it can take a few weeks for marrow to return to regular levels.

Currently, there are still few details available, such as what illness his daughter is suffering or how many bone marrow donations she will need. Regardless, Whittaker’s actions are indeed very selfless and commendable, and I’d like wish him, his daughter, and entire family the best in working through this process.

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