Brendan Schaub’s knockout victory over Mirko “Cro Cop” back in March 2011 was the biggest win of Schaub’s 15-fight MMA career. It was also the point where Schaub realized that MMA wasn’t a longterm career for him.
In a new clip from Fight Network’s series Retrospective, Schaub tells the story of sitting next to “Cro Cop” following their fight, being accidentally handed Mirko’s check, and seeing a different future for himself.
“We’re sitting in the back and I’m throwing up from all the pain, he’s sitting there and he’s getting stitched up, and I give him knuckles. He’s my hero, man, I give him knuckles. And we’re talking and the commission comes up because you have to sign your checks. They messed up and they gave me his check. And I see how he got paid. I go, “Oh,” I thought it was mine. “Oh my god,” and they’re like, “Oh, no no no,” and they give it back to him.” They give me mine and I remember I think I made $12,000 or something like that. ($12,000 to win, $12,000 to show). I got the (knockout of the night) bonus, I think it was ($100,000) or something like that.”
Salaries from UFC 128 were not released by the New Jersey State Athletic Commission, but Schaub’s Knockout of the Night bonus was worth $70,000, not $100,000.
“I’m in so much pain and I look at ‘Cro Cop’ and I go, ‘Dang, what are we doing, man?’ And he looks at me with his broken English and he goes, ‘This is life.’ I remember thinking, it was the first seed in my head, I went, ‘Is it, though?’ I looked at him and I went, ‘Is it? Mirko, is it, man?’ For him, it is. This is everything to him. To me, it was not. To me, it was not.”
Schaub went on to fight six more times following his victory over “Cro Cop,” going 2-4 and losing three of those four bouts by (T)KO. He in October 2015, nearly a year after his last fight.
Now, at 34-years-old, “The Hybrid” co-hosts The Fighter and the Kid podcast with comedian Bryan Callen, dabbles in stand-up comedy himself, and worked as a commentator for Bellator MMA and Showtime prior to Conor McGregor’s boxing debut against Floyd Mayweather.
Part 1 of Retrospective premieres on The Fight Network on Oct. 11.