UFC welterweight Mike Pyle like fine wine: 'I just keep getting better with age'
by Matt Erickson on Jun 15, 2012 at 2:10 pm ET
At 36 years old, Mike Pyle (23-8-1 MMA, 6-3 UFC) ought to be in career wind-down mode.
But after more than 30 fights, and with back-to-back knockout wins, the UFC welterweight appears to be far from thinking about retirement.
"I feel great and just as good as I did when I was a young buck bouncing around in the gym," Pyle told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio).
Pyle is coming off a "Knockout of the Night" win over Josh Neer this past weekend at UFC on FX 3. After a back-and-forth first round, Pyle dropped Neer with one punch – and Neer hadn't been knocked out in more than five years.
That win piggybacked on a first-round TKO of Ricardo Funch in hostile territory in Funch's native Brazil at UFC 142. With only a loss to Rory MacDonald this past August standing between him and a six-fight win streak, Pyle seems to have one of the hottest hands in the UFC's welterweight division.
"It felt good," Pyle said of the Neer knockout. "I've got two finishes in a row, and to finish Neer like that – nobody in the UFC has knocked him out and put him face down like I did. So that's really gratifying. … I do feel like I'm on the best run of my career."
Pyle said he's got one fight left on his UFC deal and has been in talks with his management team about what type of move might be best for him next.
But following his loss to MacDonald, Pyle's resurgence has him feeling perhaps more like a 26-year-old than 36. And that might be reason for other 170-pounders in the UFC to be on alert.
"I'm smarter about the way I approach things and smarter about the way I approach training and my career," Pyle said. "I'm like a fine wine – I just keep getting better with age. And until one day that I get out of bed and Father Time says, 'Knock it off,' then I'll listen to my body.
"But right now, my body's telling me to keep moving. I feel like a million bucks."