Cleat Geeks

An Early End?


Jordan_Mein“What do you want to be when you grow up”? This question is presented to each and every one of us at an early age. For 25 year old Jordan Mein, that answer is not a UFC contender. Mein started his professional career with a loss. This is completely understandable when you realize that he opened his now concluded career against recent title challenger Rory MacDonald. Jordan didn’t quit there. He would go on to have 38 more pro fights. When you see a fighter this young, it is a rarity to see this much experience. He has had wars with fighters such as Joe Riggs (32 y0), and Josh Burkman (34 yo), who are doing their best to stay with the UFC in their MMA considered “old age”. Mein does not intend to let his career end in the same fashion.

Fighting will always be there if someone can convince Mein to give it another shot, but after listening to his comments, I do not believe this will be very likely to occur. Jordan told the UFC that he was content with hanging up the gloves. “I gave it my all”, and “I think it would be different if I didn’t feel that way and if it was a forced situation”, sound like comments made from a man who has his mind made up. I have watched every one of his pro fights in the UFC, and will always root for this kid, even if he came out of retirement in the future. This just doesn’t feel like a hiatus to me. I think that a lot of fighters look back in their career and think “that’s the moment I should have walked away”. That’s a thought that “Young Gun” will never have to consider. 39 professional bouts in 10 years will take its toll on anyone’s body, especially at this level.

ORLANDO, FL - APRIL 19:  (R-L) Jordan Mein kicks Hernani Perpetuo in their welterweight bout during the FOX UFC Saturday event at the Amway Center on April 19, 2014 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Georges St. Pierre famously called it “quits” due to the mental stress of fighting. Frankie Perez hung it up after getting his first UFC win, in the most recent fight of the promotion, crediting physical stress to himself, and wanting to end the sacrifices that his family has had to make for his career. After Mike Swick’s UFC return at UFC 189, the former season one participant of The Ultimate Fighter also retired under his own terms. Fighting is a lifestyle that has a very low success rate. The Demetrius Johnson’s, and Anderson Silva’s of the world are anomalies for that very reason. With all of the awareness to body deterioration that the NFL has created, it is nice to see participants of a sport that would have similar wear, realize that it just isn’t worth putting your body through the grind anymore. There is life after the sport, even if at the time, they believe that they have done this “all their life”. Retirement is really just a beginning to another chapter in a person’s life. Whether you are 25 or 55, life will continue, and the show will go on with, or without you.

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