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Alistair Overeem plans to ‘retire immediately’ after winning UFC heavyweight title

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UFC Fight Night: Overeem v Sakai Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

Longtime UFC heavyweight contender Alistair Overeem is setting his sights on retirement, which probably doesn’t come as a surprise when you consider “Demolition Man” has registered more than 80 fights between MMA and kickboxing.

But Overeem, who is inching closer to his 41st birthday, isn’t going to hang up the gloves until he makes one final run at the elusive UFC heavyweight title, which continues with his UFC Vegas 18 main event against Alexander Volkov on Feb. 6.

“There definitely is momentum because we’re two wins (in a row),” Overeem told MMA Junkie. “I think my fights are good, they’re exciting. I think we’ve just got to keep this trajectory going and another title shot will be there, and that will be my last because my time is running out, which is fine. I’ve had a great career, I’m having a great career.”

To his credit, Overeem (47-18, 1 NC) has done an admirable job of keeping himself in the mix despite a couple of ill-timed setbacks. The No. 5-ranked “Demolition Man” has won four of his last five, all by way of knockout, including last September’s destruction of Augusto Sakai.

“But we also have to be realistic, and that’s a little bit where the final run comes from. I’m not going to keep fighting until I’m 45. It’s going to be one final run, then it’s going to be thank you everybody for watching, and see you in the next life. I would retire immediately (after winning the title). There’s nothing to prove at that point.”

Overeem’s one attempt at capturing the division crown ended in favor of current 265-pound kingpin Stipe Miocic after TapGate in Cleveland. Perhaps a victory over Volkov can put him in the queue behind Jon Jones for the winner of Miocic-Ngannou 2.