You won’t hear Luke Rockhold calling Robert Whittaker names for admitting to burn out.
Whittaker attributed a feeling of burn out to why he pulled out of a planned middleweight fight with Jared Cannonier. Rockhold, a fellow former UFC middleweight champion, can sympathize with Whittaker.
“People want to talk s—t from afar and don’t understand what fighting is,” Rockhold told Submission Radio (h/t MMA Fighting). “Getting to the top of the world and fighting those wars that Whittaker put in and having a family, I can’t really imagine what that does to you. You don’t want to do that forever. That’s why I never really introduced a family to this lifestyle, because it’s a lot to handle and I see a lot of people that I don’t understand how they manage it.”
“I think it’s just finding the hunger once you get to the top of the world,” he added. “You’ve gotten there, you’ve done that, what more do you want? It’s not for everybody to keep following that path. I feel like there was a tremendous weight off my shoulders and that’s why I can see where Whittaker would - he’d proven that, he’d defended that, and he’d done it a few times and proved himself. So finding that motivation and that hunger to keep going on with that same passion, I think that’s the biggest key.”
Rockhold (16-5) is coming off consecutive knockout losses to Jan Blachowicz and Yoel Romero.