Cowboy Cerrone: This is the last run

At UFC on ESPN+ 36 on September 19, Donald Cerrone got a Majority Draw vs. Niko Price. Price would have earned a Split Decision but he had a point withdrawn for an eye poke. The fight extends Cerrone’s streak without a win to five. 

Cowboy has fought 53 times across 14 years, plus dozens of kickboxing bouts, and a lifetime of hard sparring sessions. He’s 37, and employs a fighting style that is not kind to his brain, or his opponent’s. At the post-fight press conference, UFC president Dana White indicated that it might be time to leave the gloves in the Octagon.

However, the time has not come, as Cerrone explained in a video published on his YouTube channel.

“Now I can see the end of the tunnel – it’s there,” said Cerrone. “We’re at the end of the tunnel. So now it’s at the point where we’re talking legacy and we’re talking what do I want to look back on. So no longer am I in the middle kind of doing it, now I’m at the end.

“Like all right now, I don’t want to end like this. I want to end kicking ass. I’m going to do everything in my power to end like that. Now if it doesn’t go like that, it doesn’t go like that, but at least I can tell the kids, ‘Man, that’s all I had kids.’ But I don’t think that’s going to be the case.”

“This is the last run. This is it. I don’t have much left in me, timewise. If I’m going to really say this is my last run, really give it all. I’d rather go out when I want to. Go perform, enjoy it and then kick off the boots while I’m still flying through the air, call it a day. Not get cut, or everyone telling me I need to slow down or stop.

“I want to retire when I want to retire. I don’t care about what everyone else wants to say. Realistically, I’ve probably got a couple years left. That’s probably four or five fights left in me.”

Cerrone holds the UFC record for most wins, but remains haunted by one loss.

“The Conor McGregor fight, 100 percent,” Cerrone said when referencing his 40-second TKO loss to the former two-division UFC champion. “Talk about not wanting to be there. That was me fight day. I didn’t want to be nowhere [near that]. Slow starter, no starter, didn’t want to be there. That was me. It sucked. On the biggest stage, still to this day that’s the biggest pay-per-view sold fight ever, right? Everyday I look at that poster like it sucks. That’s good. I need that motivation.

“Talk about the biggest letdown ever. That was it. Biggest moment to shine. That kills me all the time. Like quitting. Didn’t even want to be there. That burns.”

The burn and motivation have led Cerrone to set aside the non-fighting recreational activities that are so much a part of his legend. Now he’s all in on training, long before one of final fight camps start.

“I’m looking to fight next year,” he explained. “Here we are in November training. I want to get up to the point where I’m at 175, I’m in shape and I’m kicking ass. Now let’s take a fight. Now I have eight weeks, 12 weeks, whatever it is to just dial it in. That’s my plan.

“I got two years left. Let’s go. Let’s make these the last, the best. If it’s going to be my last ride, I want to ride the biggest and baddest and jump off while she’s still kicking and go.”

“If I’m going to do it and make a run, I’m going to give it my all. I don’t want to half-ass it.”

h/t Damon Martin for MMA Fighting

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