On a recent episode of MMAJunkie Radio, UFC welterweight competitor Martin Kampmann (20-7) revealed that he will be taking an extended leave of absence from the sport, in order to “get the fire back”, before he steps into the octagon once again.
Kampmann last fought in August, 2013, where he suffered a fourth-round knockout loss at the hands of Carlos Condit (29-7). The defeat was Kampmann’s second via knockout in quick succession after previously being defeated by welterweight title contender Johny Hendricks (15-2) in just forty-six seconds. Following the consecutive losses, Kampmann now feels it’s time to let his body heal up before he makes a return to active competition.
“I’ve had a lot of tough fights, and even the ones I win, I sometimes make them tough for myself,” Kampmann told MMAjunkie Radio. “I’m just taking a long break. No rush to get back in the cage. Let my body recover and get good. I’m just going to kick back, and whenever I feel like coming back, I’ll come back.”
The thirty-one year old Danish striker recently celebrated ten years in the sport, having made his professional debut back in February, 2003. Kampmann arrived in the UFC in August, 2006, where he earned a submission victory over Crafton Wallace (18-6-1) and has gone on to compete seventeen times inside the octagon, amassing an 11-6 record.
“I enjoy fighting, but I’ve just had my 10-year anniversary as a professional fighter,” Kampmann said. “I feel a little burned out right now. That’s why I’m taking a break. I don’t want to get in there unless I feel like it. I love training, I love fighting, but I want to have the fire again to go in. If I don’t have the fire, then I think that means I need to take a break.”
Having suffered four knockout losses during his UFC career, Kampmann admits he hasn’t always played things smart and often returned earlier than perhaps he should have. With that in mind he now feels that the time is right to take an extended break from fighting.
“I’ve had my share of concussions, and sometimes I didn’t take the correct amount of time, and that catches up to you,” Kampmann said. “I feel OK. I’ve been better, but I feel I want to take a break. That’s why I’m taking a break.”
Kampmann finished by reiterating that he is not retiring from the sport and simply taking a break for now, while adding that when he does indeed hang up his gloves for good, he plans on sticking to the decision.
“I think when I make the decision not to fight, I’m not going to fight at all,” he said. “I’m just taking a break, and I think in the past, I should have taken more breaks because it catches up to you. Once I retire, I’m going to retire. You stick to it once you make the decision.”
During Kampmann’s seventeen-fight UFC career he has been among the top contenders for the majority of his seven and a half year run, earning five “Of the Night” awards in the process and competing in both the welterweight and middleweight division. While never quite making it into title contention, he holds notable victories over Thales Leites (22-4), Carlos Condit, Rick Story (16-7), Thiago Alves (19-9) and Jake Ellenberger (29-7).