MMA fighting

Carlos Condit discusses decision to retire from MMA: “Loved every fucking second”

Carlos Condit cannot cite a single exact reason for his recent decision to retire. He just knows it’s the right one.

The former interim UFC welterweight champion and 19-year professional MMA veteran officially called it a career last week, finishing with a 32-14 record and some of the most memorable fights in the story. In addition to the great show battles with Georges St-Pierre, Robbie Lawler and Nick Diaz, “The Natural Born Killer” was a star in World Extreme Cagefighting and his starring turn in the legendary Rumble on the Tournament will always be remembered. rock.

The past few years haven’t been kind to Condit, 37, when it comes to results as he closed his UFC run on a 2-6 streak. In what would be his last fight, Condit lost a unanimous decision to Max Griffin at UFC 264 in July.

On Monday, Condit appeared on MMA time to explain why the time had come for him to retire from the competition.

“It’s about time, man,” Condit said. “It was time. For a lot of different reasons. After that last fight, I felt like I had a good camp and I was just a step behind Max. could really try to tweak things and I could try to figure out what is missing, what part of the formula is not working right now and then go and test it again and test it again, but it’s a hard thing to do It’s a hard thing to do because eventually I have to go and put myself in the crosshairs to see if what I’m doing is working.

“At some point the returns go down, so I think it’s time to move on. “

It wasn’t long after the Griffin fight that Condit knew he would retire. After his losses, Condit had grown used to a sense of frustration that would overwhelm him, but that wasn’t the case after losing to Griffin.

“I was walking out of a hotel room after a loss and was pissed off and left all of my gear in a really salty mood and basically, ‘I’m done with this shit,’” Condit said. “But this time it was different. I wasn’t salty about it, I just felt like it was the right decision. Probably about three weeks or a month ago, I called Dana and let her know, so this thing has been going on for a little while.

Condit’s retirement may have come as a surprise to some, as he had actually strung back-to-back wins for the first time in nine years before the loss to Griffin. He won convincing decisions over fellow veterans Matt Brown and Court McGee to get back on track.

However, Condit feels that the preparation required to continue climbing to peak performances was taking its toll on him in more ways than one.

“I am an optimist,” Condit said. “I go to those places where I worry, but as soon as there is some kind of sunlight coming through the clouds, I hang on to it. I really felt a certain momentum, but I also think it’s more just the time and a lot of that is the amount of time and energy that I’m always willing to put into combat at the highest level, I think in a way that I’m ‘I’m compromising things in my life, in my personal life.

“It takes a lot of time to train as a professional mixed martial artist at the highest level in the sport. It takes a lot of energy, emotion, everything away from me. I have less to give for the rest of my life. And at this point, I don’t want to compromise anymore.

Prior to the announcement of his retirement, Condit had remained silent on social media and had given no indication that his most recent fight would be the last. Condit was facing the recent death of a close friend (whom Condit describes as a “brother”) from COVID-19, so informing the public of his career status was the least of his concerns.

Condit has said he would appreciate the chance to step back from the spotlight, but overall he doesn’t regret much of his MMA experience and, on the contrary, finds it impossible to pick a moment that stands out from the crowd.

“It’s really tough,” Condit said. “I loved every fucking second. The ups, the downs, all that. If I had to pick one in particular, those last two fights that I won when we were in Abu Dhabi and really lived in that surreal atmosphere. My coaches are all my very good friends and we had the opportunity to go to this crazy beautiful place and fight. It was very fun. But I have 19, almost 20 years of memories, so that would be really hard to pin down.

Although Condit is convinced fans last saw him in MMA, he remains involved in the martial arts community. Next up is a grappling contest against Ian Butler at Submission Underground 27 on October 10th.

When asked what his approach to fighting makes him a favorite with fans, the media and his peers, Condit has a simple explanation.

“Having had the opportunity to compete with great fighters, to train alongside these great champions, from day one I’ve always been passionate about this thing,” said Condit. “I am still. As I was thinking through all the posts, tons of posts and all this stuff about my retirement, congratulating myself, I just sat with that a bit and I think what maybe resonated with people, it’s because I approached it with passion.

“I went out there and loved to fight, I love what I do, and I was hoping every time to go out there and show it. I love every second of it.