With the growing awareness around chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in contact sports, more and more fighters are going to take the approach that Johny Hendricks did before his fight Saturday night with Robbie Lawler.
In an interview at a recent media event, Hendricks was asked how often he gets dazed in sparring, or if it has happened in a fight.
"Well, if you look at my training, if you see my helmet, it is like two inches thick," said Hendricks. "I got a big nose bar. And… I don’t take head shots. The reason why, is that you don’t get paid in the gym - you get training in the gym. I want to save them for in the Octagon, and I think that’s what helps me a lot, is don't take them in there.
"Every time you get rocked, it's a little easier, and it's a little easier, and it's a little easier, and it's a little easier. Look at a lot of guys that take punishment. They get dazed, and the next time it's easier. And the next time it's easier.
So I want to save all my… you know, I don't know how many knockouts you get in your lifetime. I don't know how many times you can get dazed in your lifetime.
"But I want to save those for the important moments. And that's in the Octagon."
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