("Does Jake Shields have a watch like this? That’s what I thought.")
Three years ago, Renato Sobral made a rash decision that would change his career and his life.
Following a submission victory over David Heath at UFC 74, Sobral refused to relinquish the fight-ending anaconda choke despite commands by referee Steve Mazzagatti to let go and he put "The Headhunter" to sleep.
He was subsequently released by the UFC and was fined half of his $50,000 purse by the Nevada State Athletic Commission for the infraction, but the biggest hit he took was to his reputation.
Sobral was a fan favorite in the UFC, but the backlash he received for that split-second decision followed him and he says he is cognizant of the effect his mistake had on his fan following and he says he has worked to rebuild his reputation.
Sometimes fans forget that fighters, like us, are human and that they sometimes have a bad night, a lapse in judgment or personal issues. They tend to look at athletes as larger than life beings, akin to superheroes who don’t have to deal with the everyday issues that plague mortals like us.
Karo Parisyan shattered that facade recently and proved that no matter how pissed off Dana White may be at a fighter, the door is never closed to a possible return to the Octagon.
We recently sat down with the former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion ahead of his December 4 bout with Dan Henderson and we broached a number of subjects including whether he thinks about going back to the UFC, what his family thought of him becoming a fighter and the trend of round winners in MMA.
Check out what Babalu had to say after the jump.