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Keith Jardine: “I want to wait until I’m ready to go out there and put it all on the line.”

Not much has been heard from Keith Jardine since his loss to Strikeforce middleweight champ Luke Rockhold in early January. That’s because, according to “The Dean of Mean”, there’s not much going on in his world where MMA is concerned. Rather, the UFC veteran has been focusing on his own well-being rather than hurrying back to bolster the emaciated state of Strikeforce’s ranks.

“I’m taking a little bit of time off working on a few things back here, trying to get healthy,” said Jardine in an interview with MMAWeekly. “I’m not sure when I’m going to come back and fight yet, but I’m not going to do it until I feel like I’m 100-percent healthy and ready to go.”

Jardine’s decision to reassess his career came in part due to the defeat to Rockhold but more so due to the way he felt inside before and during the bout.

“I feel like I didn’t show up in that last fight,” admitted Jardine who was debuting at 185 pounds against Rockhold. “That’s the first time ever in my career I felt like I was just kind of a shell of myself. I should have had a test fight first, but how can you turn down a title fight?”

“I’m going to stay the course, I’m going to give it another shot and see what happens,” added Jardine, indicating he will remain at middleweight for his next outing whenever it may come. After all, at 36, Jardine also knows his days in MMA are numbered, something working as yet another factor in his decision to take some time off instead of maintaining the pace of an athlete a decade younger.

“If it is my last fight my next fight, I’ll know I gave 100 percent and I gave all of myself. Usually (Strikeforce knows) whenever they want me I’ll fight, and this is the first time where I want to wait until I’m ready to go out there and put it all on the line,” he concluded.

The 17-10 Jardine is 2-1-1 in his last four fights including a Draw against former light heavyweight champion Gegard Mousasi. Throughout his well-documented career the popular journeyman has notched wins inside the Octagon against Brandon Vera, Chuck Liddell, and Forrest Griffin.