Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (34-9-1) has done it all.
He’s been a Pride Heavyweight Champion, UFC Interim Heavyweight Champion, multiple time Pan-Am Jiu Jitsu Champion.
But he’s gone 1-3 in his last 4 and has been stopped in all 3 of his defeats.
He’s recently lost back to back fights for the only time in his famed career, a second round submission loss to the current UFC Heavyweight number 1 contender Fabricio Werdum at UFC on Fuel TV 10 and he was knocked unconscious in the 1st round in his main event bout at UFC Fight Night 39 against “Big Country” Roy Nelson.
Is it time for him to hang up the gloves for good?
“Big-Nog” doesn’t think so.
In a recent interview with a Brazilian publication, Nogueira pleaded his case to stay active in the sport of MMA.
“I know I won’t fight forever,” said Nogueira as translated by Guilherme Cruz for MMAFighting. “I’m focused on my gym’s business now. It’s a beautiful work, we have 9,000 students, 32 gyms. … I plan to end my career by the end of the next year, I believe. One more year. It’s until the point my body can handle.
“So many injuries, I’m dedicating to other things now. I will decide when the time comes. I have two more fights in my contract, and then I’ll stop (fighting).”
“They want to rush my retirement. The fans are very critical in Brazil.”
“You see Randy Couture’s career. He has two wins for each loss, and he’s treated like an idol. He’s Captain American, national hero. I have four wins for each loss, and they say I have to retire. Brazilians are very critical, and I think it’s a bad mentality for the athlete.”
In all honesty people hate to see a legend hang on for too long.
In my humble opinion I wouldn’t want to watch Big Nog get knocked out of his rocker once more and with the Heavyweight landscape in the UFC today it seems likely that would happen if he continued his career.