with much dread, i watched the first 2 rounds of gonzaga vs cro cop 2 yesterday. then all of a sudden, cro cop landed two brutal elbows from the clinch and got gonzaga down where he eventually finished him with some more brutal elbows (the last is my fave, so savage) and then some hammer fists. it was an incredible resolution to the fight that seemed to appear out of nowhere. the fight picks up around 2:30 in the following clip.
i was absolutely ecstatic for cro cop. he’s 40 now, his record has been hit and miss for the last 4-5 years, and his loss to gonzaga in 2007 was devastating and unexpected and seemed to mark the beginning of the end of cro cop’s career. so i think this emphatic win was a big deal on multiple levels — revenge on gonzaga, proof that cro cop is still a destroyer despite his mixed recent record, and proof that he could still do it at age 40.
and on that note, i think he should retire.
the MMA game is so brutal that i think even the best must be cognizant of their expiry date. i don’t want anyone to get any more brain damage or concussions than they already must have. i don’t want anyone to break their legs or blow their knees or shoulders and not be able to enjoy the rest of their lives pain-free. i want all fighters (and people in general) to realize that there is life after your career, so don’t go fucking that life up for your pride or some short-sighted goal, or anything. it’s like people who work their asses off and then die 6 months into retirement of a heart attack. if only they had learned to step away from their career and enjoy life outside of it while they had a chance. i think it’s a fucking shame. you can argue that some people are happier working till they die but i don’t buy it. i think that’s like saying alcoholics are happier drinking than quitting.
besides, this was such a tense, exciting fight with a violent, unquestionable finish. the history leading up to it made it almost mythical, and cro cop couldn’t have asked for a more thrilling end to it. how could he top that for a final fight? how else does he envision himself ending his career? i personally hate when fighters go through a string of 10 straight losses before throwing in the towel. it’s sad and tarnishes their legacy, and at his age i believe that is where cro cop will end up if he continues to fight.
i like fighters to appreciate the good run they have had and end their career on a high note, like GSP did (say what you want but i’ve watched his last fight with hendricks a few times and i think it’s clear that GSP won 3 of thos 5 rounds). cro cop certainly hasn’t had quite the illustrious career that GSP did but he is no less a living legend, and he deserves to preserve that legacy by ending it with this undeniable stamp that says, “i am still a fucking powerful monster of a man.“