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Years in UFC: 7
I know, I know...this one's going to ruffle a few feathers. When it comes to Sonnen, there's usually no mixed feelings for UFC fans. You either love him and pray White gives him a third shot at Silva's belt, or you pray the man swallows a fork and finally shuts up.
For the record, I happen to fall firmly in the second camp and, hence, I've placed him first and foremost in my fantasy retirement picks.
The case for shelving Sonnen is very simple: while's he tough as nails and has a mouth as wide and foul as the Mississippi River, what is he hoping to achieve in the few years he's got left in the fight game?
He talks. A lot. He talks and talks and badgers and whines and calls names until enough people take notice and White figures the guy's good for business and he lands himself in the cage against the middleweight champ and loses. And then bellyaches and hollers and gets back in the cage and loses. Again.
He's talked a lot, fought some good fights, but when it comes down to achieving what he swears is his life's work, he can't quite get it done.
He's expected to abandon the 185-pound division and fight Forrest Griffin at UFC 155 in December and my outlook for him in this division is grim. It's stacked full of tough opponents and in my humble opinion, I just don't see Sonnen making much of an impact...leading me back to my original question:
What exactly is Sonnen hoping to accomplish with his final few years in the fight game?