UFC middleweight Josh Samman has died after being hospitalized late last week, according to a report from the Tallahassee Democrat. He was 28 years old.
Samman and roommate Troy Kirkingburg were found unresponsive at their Hollywood Beach Gardens Apartment on Sept. 29. Kirkingburg, a ring announcer for the Samman-owned MMA promotion Combat Night, was pronounced dead on arrival at a South Florida hospital. Samman was reportedly in critical condition in a coma before passing away on Wednesday.
“They both had the ability to light up a room with their enthusiasm,” Adam Corey, a friend of both men, told the Democrat. “They captivated you, not only by their looks and conversation but for their joy of getting to know people.”
Sky Rudloe, a training partner of Samman’s, said: “He was a good guy and the face of the sport in all of North Florida. I’m going to miss him.”
According to the report, Samman was breathing and had a pulse after being found last Thursday. Hollywood, Fla., police suspect that a drug overdose was the cause of Samman’s condition. However, Samman’s mother issued a statement denying that drugs had anything to do with the fighter’s hospitalization.
"And in spite of speculation, there was no heroin found in Josh's system whatsoever. No matter what people are posting on social media,” she said.
"The reason I am making this statement is, because Josh touched so many lives, and loved inspiring others, especially young people. I don't want them to lose faith in him, and whatever he brought out in them, because of the lies. He would want them to ‘never give up.’”
According to the Hollywood Police Department report, the investigation is still ongoing. No signs of foul play were involved.
Samman competed on Season 17 of “The Ultimate Fighter” and compiled a 3-2 mark in five Octagon appearances. He last competed at UFC Fight Night 91 on July 13, when he suffered a second-round TKO loss to Tim Boetsch. Samman went 12-4 over the course of a professional MMA career that began in 2007.