Lack of focus and desire does not benefit a man who makes his living as a professional fighter. When Jonathan Brookins faced off against Dustin Poirier at The Ultimate Fighter 16 Finale it appears that he was anything but focused.
While Brookins certainly put up a good fight while losing by submission in the first round, he is putting his career on hold for the time being, moving to India and might never be back in the cage.
Jonathan explained the situation to Fightland (as an aside, Fightland has been one of the most consistently good reads in the MMA game lately):
Fightland: So you mentioned having to sell your house. Is it hard to make a career in MMA, even when you’ve made it to the UFC?
Jonathan Brookins: It’s not hard to make a career in the UFC. If you really want it, you can make it happen. I think I just talked myself of really wanting it. I don’t know if I talked myself out of it or if I really don’t want it anymore. That made it tough to keep going and to fight last weekend. I didn’t really have much fight left in me. I kind of hit a dead end.
I definitely had my mind on other things I wanted to do and pursue. I just stopped believing in the fight business and stopped believing in what it was I was even doing. I just didn’t quite understand. There wasn’t much that I wanted about that (Poirier) fight.
Were you in the Octagon thinking about India?
I think I was. I think I was ready to go to India and learn something else.
Brookins also said that he might be done with fighting:
...I’m going to pursue this harder than I even pursued fighting. I feel like it could make me a much better fighter, but if it leads me to not fight again, I think I would be okay with that.
There are some fighters who can swear up and down that they're retiring and it's impossible to take them seriously. While Brookins isn't saying he's stepping away from the sport forever, he is the kind of person where you believe him when he says that he'd be okay if his path leads to him not fighting again.
Since winning the twelfth season of The Ultimate Fighter, Brookins has gone 1-3. He doesn't appear headed toward title contender status but he is a tough out for anyone should he decide to stick around the sport.