Evans: I give a little bit of depression
Former UFC light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans appeared recently on Ariel Helwani’s The MMA Hour, and discussed losing. Suga won the UFC belt without a single loss, lost it in his first title defense, and then went four more fights and nearly three years without another loss.
In 2014 Evans was out with injuries and didn’t fight at all. In 2015, he had one fight, a loss to Ryan Bader. In 2016 he had one fight, a loss to Glover Teixeira. His sole fight so far this year was a loss to unheralded Aussie Dan Kelly, at middleweight. His last win was vs. Chael Sonnen in 2013. And he turns 38 in September.
“At the end of the day, you fight long enough, you will lose, you will have a setback,” said Evans, as transcribed by Dave Doyle for MMA Fighting. “No matter what you do in life, you’re going to have a setback, you’re going to have a bad day. It’s just the process of life or anything you put your time into. I’m no exception to it.”
“For the longest time, I didn’t lose. I didn’t lose until I fought Machida. And I pretty much spoiled my family and everyone who supported me or was a fan of me, because I never lost, but I never had to deal with it, it just becomes yeah, Rashad must be good in his life. Then when I lose, its like, I’m doing terrible, something’s gone wrong.
“People think if I lose a fight, there must be something terribly wrong with a fight, now it’s about fighting anymore, now it’s life advice. It’s crazy to me.”
“Whenever I go to camp and do everything to make sure I can compete in the Octagon, I’m denying myself a lot, and then I say to myself to make it easier, when I win this fight then I can enjoy myself. Then when I don’t win the fight I can’t forgive myself enough to enjoy myself. I just wasted my time. I give a little bit of depression. Then you gotta pull yourself out of it, it really is hard. I’ve gotten better at losing, I haven’t won in awhile, but it’s still a process. I give myself a couple days to grieve over it and get to work.”
What Evans wants next is another fight, and soon. Former fellow Blackzilian Vitor Belfort named Evans as a possible opponent for his final fight, but Suga is not interested.
“I would never fight Vitor, he’s a close personal friend,” said Evans. “I know his family and it’s really hard to do that. Fighting is unlike any other sport in the sense where it’s a fight, and at some point I’m going to want to do harm, like serious harm, in order to have my hand raised. And I can’t do that to somebody that I’ve had a relationship with on a personal level. That’s a fight I wouldn’t want to have.”