Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images
Eryk Anders will have an interesting story to tell about incredible luck moving forward.
On Friday, Anders took to Instagram to show gruesome photos of his foot that had been sliced open thanks to a running chainsaw. Days later, “Ya Boi” explained what happened and how the situation could’ve been much worse.
“I was cutting down trees, the chainsaw jumped and landed on my foot,” Anders told MMA Fighting on We Got Next, which will drop on Thursday. “The crazy thing is that I’ve been doing yard work and building a garden inside of my backyard, and I’ve been wearing steel-toed boots all week. Then the one time I go to use a chainsaw — I thought it would be a quick little trim, some easy work — I had my tennis shoes. And I even looked at the boots as I was pulling out of the driveway, didn’t even give it a second thought.
“I cut down these two trees, and then when I was on the third one, the blade got stuck. I kept the chainsaw running with one hand, pushed the tree a little bit up with the other hand, and I thought that it would just cut through the tree, but it didn’t. It just kind of ran across the tree and landed on my foot.”
The immediate reaction to a running chainsaw landing on your foot would most likely be panic. For Anders, it seems like it was just another moment in time. Once reality had sunk in, the UFC middleweight took a look at his shoe.
“To be honest, I didn’t even know that it had cut my foot,” Anders said. “I realized, ‘That s*** just hit my foot,’ looked down and the shoelaces, my shoe was all mangled. I was like, ‘Oh, s***, that did cut.’
“I slid my foot out of my shoe and all you could see was white meat, then just filled in with blood, just this lava. I was really nervous because the first thing I thought about was my career, and how am I gonna fight if I can’t move my toes? So I started wiggling my toes, I could feel my toes, so I didn’t think I did any permanent damage or nerve damage.”
Even though Anders wasn’t worried the injury would keep him out of action for any significant amount of time, he called a stop to the Friday landscaping and preceded to seek medical attention.
The string of pretty good luck continued while he was there.
“I drove like a bat out of hell to an urgent care,” Anders explained. “I walked in there and was standing in the doorway and said, ‘I just cut my foot real bad. I think I need stitches. Does somebody want to help me out?’ They were like, ‘Come fill out this paperwork,’ and I said, ‘Lady, I don’t think you understand that my foot is leaking right now. I’m bleeding all over your place, all over your floor mat here.’ She looked down, they got me a wheelchair and took me back there.
“When I got back there, the doctor said, ‘I’m about to leave so you might have to go to the emergency room because the next doctor on shift doesn’t do stitches.’ I was like, ‘C’mon man, look at my s***.’ Long story short, he ended up staying and gave me about 20 stitches. But I’m walking, I’m about to go train so I don’t think there’s too much damage at all.”
The 13-fight UFC veteran says that he had put pen to paper on a matchup for “late May” against an opponent yet to be officially announced before the chainsaw landed on his foot. I will be his first bout since a submission loss to Andre Muniz at UFC 269 in December.
Anders didn’t seek counsel from the doctor in terms of whether or not he’d be able to compete after suffering his injuries, but did take the professional’s advice, and is expecting to have the stitches removed on Monday.
“If I’m still walking, I’m there,” Anders said about his upcoming fight. “All the doctor said was, ‘Don’t run,’ and I don’t run much anyway, so it’s all good.”