Top Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight Martin Kampmann is burned out and taking an extended leave of absence, following 10 long years as an active mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter, which includes a lengthy stint inside the Octagon.
"The Hitman" is going to follow Georges St. Pierre's lead and take the next exit to get off the combat sports interstate, to help his body heal up from "tough fights," some of which included concussions that by his own admission, probably did not get the necessary recovery time.
From MMA Junkie:
"I've had a lot of tough fights, and even the ones I win, I sometimes make them tough for myself. I'm just taking a long break. No rush to get back in the cage. Let my body recover and get good. I'm just going to kick back, and whenever I feel like coming back, I'll come back. I've had my share of concussions, and sometimes I didn't take the correct amount of time, and that catches up to you. I feel okay. I've been better, but I feel I want to take a break. That's why I'm taking a break. I'm not retiring yet. I'm trying to pursue other things right now too. I'm not training so much. I've been in the gym coaching some guys, probably going to corner some guys coming up, and also I'm starting an affiliation program to certify trainers and gyms under me, so I'm helping the MMA program. I think when I make the decision not to fight, I'm not going to fight at all. I'm just taking a break, and I think in the past, I should have taken more breaks because it catches up to you. Once I retire, I'm going to retire. You stick to it once you make the decision."
His decision may come sooner rather than later.
That's because Kampmann (20-7) is coming off back-to-back knockout losses to Johny Hendricks and Carlos Condit, the latter of which marked the fifth time in his professional career that he's been stopped due to strikes. In addition, the 32 year-old "Hitman" has failed to secure his long-coveted number one contender spot since dropping to welterweight in 2009.
The clock is ticking.