UFC fighter Themba Gorimbo's life took a remarkable turn when Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson gifted him a new house in Miami, putting an end to his days of sleeping on a gym couch.
The heartwarming encounter between Johnson and Gorimbo was captured in a video posted by the actor and wrestler, who decided to pay a surprise visit to the fighter after their interactions on social media. The meeting was spurred by Gorimbo's revelation that he had only $7 in his bank account before achieving his first victory at UFC Vegas 73, a story that deeply touched Johnson.
Following his triumph over Takashi Sato at UFC Vegas 73, Gorimbo expressed his intention to auction off his fight kit to raise funds for the construction of a water well in his hometown in Zimbabwe, prioritizing the needs of his community over his own career aspirations.
“I was happier raising that money than I was after my win,” Gorimbo told MMA Fighting. “When I got home where I come from and I help these people build this borehole and I helped these kids pay for their school supplies, I don’t have entitlement. I don’t want to go back so I can say ‘I helped you guys.’ I don’t want to see that ever again, but that happiness can only help me. If I help, I feel so good, and when I feel so good, I’m dangerous [in MMA].”
The gesture moved Johnson, who famously pursued his own dreams after once having only $7 in his bank account, which eventually served as the name for his company, Seven Bucks Productions.
“I’ve got to tell you, your story moved me,” Johnson told Gorimbo during their first face-to-face meeting. “When I found out you had $7 in your bank account, I know what that’s like. I was here in Miami when I had $7, but then also you win your second fight, then you sell your fight kit, you buy a water well for your village in Zimbabwe so your people can have clean water.
“Because you could have taken that money and put it down on a car, on an apartment, but you didn’t. You took care of your people, and that just says exactly who you are, and that’s why I flew all the way in. Just to look you in the eyes and tell you, I got your back.”
Welcome home @TheAnswerMMA— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) August 3, 2023
You and your family enjoy your new house brother.
Lights are on.
Bills are paid.
Keep your “My Reason” list close, keep taking care of your people and I’m honored to play a very, very small role in your $7 bucks journey.
I’ve been there… pic.twitter.com/rSyC7EiD5I
The heartwarming exchange didn't end there. As Johnson spent time with Gorimbo, he was deeply moved when he saw the 32-year-old veteran sleeping on a couch, surrounded by luggage and an inspiring sign that served as a constant reminder of what he was fighting for. Touched by Gorimbo's determination, Johnson took him on a drive that eventually led to a beautiful house, a generous gift from the renowned WWE superstar. This new home is where Gorimbo can now comfortably reside while pursuing his training in Miami.
“I wanted to look you in the eye and I wanted to tell you welcome home,” Johnson said as he handed the keys over to an emotional Gorimbo.
Gorimbo had tears in his eyes as he took a tour of his new house, telling Johnson he was going to use this gift as a way to help continue giving back to his home village in Africa.
“Because you got me this house, I was supposed to get a house to come here,” Gorimbo explained. “The money that I was going to use for the house, I’m going to build another borehole in my village now when I land in Africa.”
Gorimbo, who boasts a 1-1 record in the UFC, also vowed to make Johnson proud as he continues his career, with high hopes to make an even bigger impact moving forward.
“I will become a champion,” Gorimbo said. “Trust me.”