The power of the mind can outweigh the body as widely seen in the world of mixed martial arts with fighters putting their long-term health on the line while competing.
Oftentimes, a battle of attrition takes place between fighters of equal skill, with the one who can endure most likely to become the last person standing. Within these battles, fans have collectively witnessed brutal cuts, compound fractures and the grotesque swelling from hematoma.
Hold on to your lunches as we look at five hematoma that may make you want to protect your cranium.
Mark Hominick vs. Jose Aldo at UFC 129
In what then was the largest-selling Ultimate Fighting Championship event, UFC 129 was co-headlined by Canadian Mark Hominick challenging Brazilian ruler Jose Aldo for the featherweight crown.
The fight was largely dominated by the heavy strikes of Aldo. At the time, no fighter in the featherweight division was able to find a weakness in the Manaus-native.
In the fourth round, Aldo continued with heavy leg kicks, breaking down the defenses of Hominick. After getting hit with a couple jabs, Aldo dropped Hominick with a heavy jab-cross combination.
While on the ground with Hominick pressed up against the cage, Aldo landed a heavy elbow strike. Immediately, a large hematoma started swelling on the side of Hominick's head, blowing up over the top of his right eyebrow. Referee John McCarthy briefly stopped the fight to call in a doctor, who would remarkably let the fight continue.
Even more remarkably, Hominick would return in the fifth round and take down Aldo, dominating the position to win the round, exposing Aldo's weakness for the first time in his career.
Brendan Schaub vs. Andrei Arlovski at UFC 174
Andrei Arlovski returned to the UFC in 2014 after a six-year excursion fighting outside of the world's premiere promotion and was scheduled to take on TUF 10 finalist Brendan Schaub at UFC 174.
The fight was highly uneventful as Dana White would explain, "I think everyone would agree that fight sucked. That fight was horrible. Do you know who lost in that fight? The fans. The fans lost in that fight."
The fight was filled with plenty of clinches with lack of action.
In the third round, Schaub managed to get Arlovski to the ground and started throwing strikes from the Belarusian's guard. Arlovski would respond by throwing strikes back at Schaub. During these exchanges or due to repeated strikes, swelling would become visible on Schaub's right cheek.
Arlovski would eventually fight his way back to his feet and win a split decision.
By the time the decision was announced, the hematoma on Schaub would protrude past his cheek bone.
Schaub would report after the fight that he was cleared by doctors.
Matt Mitrione vs. Travis Browne at UFC Fight Night Boston
Matt Mitrione was entering the final fight on his UFC contract and wanted to make an eye-opening performance for his suitors. Unfortunately he could not do that against Travis Browne at UFC Fight Night Boston in January 2016.
Mitrione would suffer eye pokes in the first and second rounds, which would compromise him for the remainder of the fight.
A solid right midway through the third round would be the beginning of the end for Mitrione. Browne's punch not only got Mitrione to start backpedaling, but it began to shut Mitrione's bad eye. Browne would follow up with strikes on the ground to finish the fight. By the time the fight was over, Mitrione's eye was bulged out from it's socket in the size of a golf ball.
'Meathead' would attempt to appeal the decision, which was denied by the Massachusetts State Athletic Commission.
Joe Proctor vs. Justin Salas at UFC Fight Night Atlantic City
UFC lightweights Proctor and Salas met in the Octagon at UFC Fight Night Atlantic City in 2014.
The first round was even with both fighters trading pretty heavy shots in technical exchanges. A slight mouse around Proctor's ear would become visible, while Salas would begin bleeding from the nose.
With one minute to go in the first round, Salas would counter Proctor near the ear on the exact spot that was swelling in the beginning of the fight. The slight mouse would turn into a full blown hematoma.
Commentator Brian Stann would remark, "It looks like he's growing a second head."
Proctor would come back in the second round to stop Salas with strikes.
Brandon Wolff vs. Ben Saunders from UFC: Fight For The Troops
In an event recognized for significant serious injuries, how would we not be able to complete a list of hematoma without UFC: Fight For The Troops?
UFC newcomer Brandon Wolff was scheduled to take on the troubled Jon "War Machine" Koppenhaver, but Wolff's opponent was replaced by Ben Saunders.
Other than the glove taps at the start of the fight, and one following an accidental low blow, Wolff did not touch Saunders.
From the opening bell, Saunders blasted Wolff with kicks, and then knees from the Muay Thai clinch. Wolff eventually collapsed from the strikes and the referee waved off the fight in just under two minutes.
Luckily for Wolff, he had a large lump on his forehead instead of a gaping hole as he just ate over 30 unanswered knees to the cranium.