David "Tank" Abbott | Jeff Sherwood/Sherdog.com
Mixed martial arts and pro wrestling talent Daniel Puder will not fight UFC veteran David “Tank” Abbott as originally anticipated at Knockout Fights “The Beginning,” which is scheduled to go down Feb. 26 at the Santa Monica Airport in Santa Monica, Calif.
Puder has suffered a torn meniscus and will be unable to compete.
The fan favorite, however, had his own opinion on Puder’s withdraw. According to Abbott, Puder noticed that the heavy-handed pioneer had shown up in shape during a prefight news conference and subsequently pulled out of the bout.
“Puder is the new school b---h,” said Abbott. “A warrior never puts down his sword.”
Puder stated that his injury is legitimate. What's imaginary, said Puder, is the condition in which Abbott purports he is in. When informed of Abbott's account of the press conference, the 29-year-old simply laughed and asked, “Tank, in shape?”
“I'm sure he is pissed [that I got injured],” said Puder. “I'm pissed, too.”
Abbott burst onto the scene in 1996, brawling his way to the finals of UFC 6 before being choked out by durable Russian Oleg Taktarov. After a five-year break from fighting, during which he dabbled in professional wrestling with WCW, “Tank” returned to the cage in 2003. The stocky 46-year-old has fallen on hard times in the last decade, losing eight of his last 10 fights. Abbott was last seen knocking out veteran Mike Bourke in February 2009. Outside of the cage, he is reportedly attempting to publish a book on his life as a mixed martial artist.
Currently performing for New Japan Pro Wrestling, Puder began his MMA career in 2003. The undefeated heavyweight is perhaps best known for his stint as a WWE performer, during which he won the organization's “Tough Enough” reality show in 2004. A veteran of Bodog Fight and Strikeforce, Puder has finished five of his eight career victims by either knockout or submission.