- Luke Rockhold addressed talks about his potential UFC return
- The former champion knows it wouldn’t be easy
Just shortly after saying goodbye to MMA following his loss to Paulo Costa at UFC 278, Luke Rockhold said the door is not closed yet and he might consider making a return. Apparently, the former middleweight champion seemed serious about it as he recently revealed what could make him come out of retirement.
Luke Rockhold Says Alex Pereira Winning The Middleweight Championship Could Bring Him Out of Retirement
In a recent interview with Submission Radio, Rockhold was quizzed to talk about a potential UFC return. According to the 37-year-old, it will depend on if someone can inspire him to do so. And at this point, Rockhold said that it could be Alex Pereira dethroning reigning middleweight champ Israel Adesanya at UFC 281.
“If I get inspired, if someone inspires me to get back in it…you never know,” Rockhold revealed. “[Maybe] That Brazilian dude winning the title. Alex Pereira.”
It’s gonna be taxing
Despite flirting with the idea of making a quick UFC comeback, Rockhold is well aware that it wouldn’t be as easy as it sounds. For example, the former champ stressed that he can’t just jump into title contention even if Pereira beat Adesanya as he’s likely to face the No. 1 contender Robert Whittaker or anyone else “in between.”
“The only thing is you gotta fight Robert Whittaker or some sh*t in between…To win or lose to Robert Whittaker, that sh*t hurts. It’s gonna hurt, we’re gonna fight,” he explained.
While Luke Rockhold may not be rushing back to the Octagon, the fighter confirmed that he still enjoys training and has every intention of staying in shape.
“I mean, there’s tons of opportunity. I’m not looking to get out of shape in any way, shape, or form. I really still enjoy the training aspect. I just don’t want to do the part that really hurts me. I’ll do some boxing sparring, but like, you get into full MMA sparring and everything starts to break down when you’re fighting the bad dudes. I’m just gonna work on getting better.”
Rockhold lost his middleweight strap to his former arch-rival Michael Bisping in 2016. Since then, he has gone 1-3 in his last four trips to the octagon. Can Rockhold still do it at 37? Let’s wait and see.