Longtime fans of MMA undoubtedly remember Karo Parisyan’s impressive run in the Octagon from 2004-2007 when the talented judoka picked up wins over a number of respected adversaries such as Nick Diaz, Chris Lytle, and Matt Serra. In fact, Parisyan was on the cusp of contendership before an injury sidelined him.
However, since then it has been a downward spiral for the Armenian-American competitor including a battle with addiction, an anxiety disorder, and subpar performances. Since 2008 Parisyan is 1-4 including losses in his last three fights, the most recent of which came this past September where he fell by Split Decision to rising prospect Jordan Smith.
Another chapter to the sad story of an athlete who seemingly peeked in his early 20s was written recently in an interview with Fightline where Parisyan opened up about the current state of his life where he frankly admitted his head/heart haven’t been in MMA for some time and said things in general are rough at the moment.
“I’m known for doing interviews, opening up to people and telling them what the hell’s going on, but it’s not going to change anything if I have five more people feel f–king sorry for me,” Parisyan began before continuing, “Man, it’s pretty bad. I don’t even care anymore. Right now, I’m in the worst time of my life. With Christmas and New Year’s…I’m in the worst time financially – but, you know what? It’s gonna be good. I never cry about it, I’m not gonna cry about it. I’m gonna do what I have to do to come back. I’m a grown ass man and enough is enough. For the time being, my head is just with the family. Trying to get by, trying to have a Christmas and trying to have a New Year’s and see what 2012 f***ing brings.”
“I guess enough is enough,” Parisyan said of his stalled career. “I’ve got to either come back and really give it my all, or f***ing hang up the gloves and stop embarrassing myself.”
Asked to elaborate, Parisyan explained, “For the first time in three and a half years, I would have to look at everything in a serious way again. Before, I looked at it in a very serious fashion. It was my lifestyle. This sport was my lifestyle, it wasn’t my job. When it becomes your job, that’s when you start hating it. Who the f*** likes their job? I mean, you can say, ‘I love my job,’ but when it comes down to it, eventually you’re going to be like, ‘Ugh, I don’t want to go to work today.’ When it comes down to a job, I don’t want to do this sh*t no more. I’ve just gotta turn it into a lifestyle.”
“Back in the day, this sport was a lifestyle for me,” the 19-8 Parisyan reflected. “I’d wake up in the morning and it’s, ‘Hey, do you wanna go run for seven miles?’ ‘Yeah, let’s go.’ And we’d go run for seven f**kin’ miles. Why? Because that’s all we knew how to do, is to train. It was bred into us since we were kids, eight years old – bred. Everyday, training, hurting your opponent, dismantle, hit, hit, break – it was all we did, it was a lifestyle. We did all this stuff because we wanted to, not because we had to. When it started to get to the point where I have to, is when I started not liking it.”
Parisyan concluded things by stating he hoped to fight in February or March with the possibility of his involvement in a yet-to-be-announced tournament but stated nothing official had been signed while also praising Ronda Rousey for bringing judo back to the forefront of fans’ collective conscience.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC