Former UFC welterweight contender Karo Parisyan has been battling personal demons and waning motivation for the last few years, seeking to find the drive and strength of mind which once carried him near the top of the heap.
The Heat spoke with FightLine just before the holidays, discussing everything from his recent career slump to his UFC 49 scrap with Nick Diaz.
FightLine: First off, you're last fight was a tough battle with Jordan Smith, I know it went down in September, but are you nursing any injuries from that fight?
Karo Parisyan: No, I'm just feeling like an idiot, that's all.
FL: Why are you feeling like an idiot?
KP: I'm not taking any of these fights as serious as I'm supposed to. Guys I'm supposed to walk over - not walk over, I don't want to be disrespectful. Guys I'm supposed to beat, I end up going to a split decision loss or a loss because of a cut - the Ryan Ford fight I'm pretty sure I won, but I shouldn't have event given him the chance to cut me.
FL: And where's your head at now with all of that? You talk about how you've gone through a lot personally, you've lost two very close fights this year, what's your mindset like right now?
KP: My head, at the time - this is the worst time ever. I don't even know what to say, I'm speechless. 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. 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 coming up, 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--king brings.
FL: So what do you hope for in 2012? It sounds like you're just trying to get by right now, but that maybe you're looking to rediscover your fire and make a comeback? Am I off base there?
KP: No, you're pretty much in the ballpark. That's what I plan on doing. I know I've said this before, several times, 'Oh, I'm doing this, I'm going to do that, and this and that,' - but I always fell short and that's why people stopped believing me. 'I don't believe Karo anymore. I don't believe anything he says. He's gotta prove it before he says anything.' I'm a guy like that myself. I'd rather see it than hear it. When I see it, I'll believe it. I guess enough is enough. I've got to either come back and really give it my all, or f--king hang up the gloves and stop embarrassing myself.
Because, if I give it my all, I know I can get back to the top and be better than before. There are guys that are fighting that have no f--king business fighting, have no business in the UFC. No disrespect, if you get in the cage I have respect for you, because you walk in that cage. But as far as when you narrow it down to skills and who's doing what, it can be pathetic. It is what it is.
FL: Well, the welterweight division definitely has fewer getting spun around like pinwheels in your absence, I'll say that.
Along those lines - and this is in no way meant to be disrespectful towards Nick Diaz, I only use him as an example because you hold a victory over him and he's doing very well right now - does it motivate you to see someone you beat in the past, like Diaz, being so successful, getting ready to fight for an interim title?
FightLine Exclusive Interview With Karo Parisyan