A planned farewell for Donald Cerrone could save his life

Donald Cerrone

Deciding to retire in the world of professional sport isn’t easy and no one should pretend any differently. As much as fans enjoy watching their heroes in action, they will never truly comprehend the rush that comes from the highs that professional sport provides its athletes. It is an all-consuming feeling that only a very small minority are privileged enough to experience. Having to admit that the time has come to live a life where those euphoric peaks will no longer feature is understandably extremely tough.

Naturally, the way in which a professional athlete comes to the realization that it is time to call it a day does vary. If you’re a footballer, perhaps the goals dry up; if you play baseball, the home runs all but vanish. In the world of combat sports, however, the reality is a lot more gruesome and can quite literally hit home with an almighty bang. Being past your best in a code like MMA is a dangerous place to be. Basically, once fighters are unable to properly defend themselves anymore, the towel needs to be thrown in for good.

This cowboy has had enough

For UFC legend Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, there doesn’t seem to be any intention to quit despite recently suffering his fifth loss in a row. Three of those five matches have ended in round one and during those fights, he has suffered 422 significant strikes. That is a stat that should make the UFC powers that be sit up and take immediate action given the alarming trend it clearly illustrates.

If any other proof was required of the desperate need for a plan of action then it can be found in this stat: in his last 14 fights since 2017, Cerrone has only recorded four wins. The entire industry can see that it is time to go yet the 38-year-old is still intent on carrying on. Cowboy’s exact words after defeat have been, “I couldn’t let my legacy end like this.” Astonishingly, Cerrone is coming back for more – but just how much more can he take?

The Denver native is a multimillionaire so this clearly isn’t a case of trying to add to his retirement nest egg. For further proof, take a look at mmascene.com to understand how much fighters earn in terms of bonuses, salaries, and other payouts. One quickly realizes that Cerrone is not doing it for the money. Rather, it’s all about going out with a win but after half a dozen tries, it seems like there is very little chance to make that a reality. Worryingly, this is something that Cerrone quite clearly refuses to believe.

The UFC’s contingency plan for their loyal man

This is where Dana White and other high-ranking UFC officials need to take control of the situation by organizing the 38-year-old a send-off fight. Picking Cerrone’s opponent should be relatively straightforward given that he needs to be put up against the worst in the division. A journeyman who is normally served up to young and upcoming fighters as a sacrificial lamb should do. Perhaps Shaun Lomas is an option given the fighter from Sheffield, England, has suffered a record 82 losses in the octagon. As undignified as it sounds, the MMA industry is in a frantic race against time to ensure that Cerrone isn’t on the end of another merciless beating.

The tragic irony is that Cerrone will do anything to preserve his legacy as a UFC great by not going out on a defeat, but in the process, suffering five straight losses has done more to erode his reputation than anything else could have done. This is, after all, a sport that is watched in every part of the globe as asiabet.org demonstrates with their viewing figures for UFC 229. The 2019 event secured 2.4 million pay-per-view buys with estimations suggesting the total number of viewers could have run into the 10s of millions. In reality, the growth of MMA has taken the sports world by storm and you just have to take a look at the sheer number of international MMA betting markets available to understand how global this sport actually is.

One could say somewhat unkindly of course, that the best thing Cerrone can do for his legacy is to call it a day. So many eyes have been watching him tarnish his once-revered name by losing so often. A planned farewell is desperately needed for the UFC legend that has helped the sport become the international phenomenon that it is.


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