At age 42, Matt Brown is still finding ways to win fights and score UFC knockouts.
The veteran welterweight, who joined the promotion in 2008 after appearing on The Ultimate Fighter 7, scored an impressive knockout over Court McGee at UFC Charlotte on Saturday night, which tied him with Derrick Lewis for the all-time record in UFC history with 13 knockouts overall.
Over the past 15 years, Brown has been a stalwart in the UFC, picking up a number of memorable wins while many of his contemporaries have flamed out and left the organization, or even retired from competition at a much younger age.
When it comes to Brown, UFC president Dana White has an idea why the Ohio native is still able to hang with the best of the best, even after admitting on numerous occasions that time is the greatest enemy for any top fighter in the sport.
“Power,” White responded when asked about the secret to Brown’s long-term success. “The guy has the power to end the fight at any moment. That’s the game-changer.
“If you can go out and get into the pocket and start trading with another guy, and you have the kind of power that Matt Brown has, and the chin — it’s cool to see two OGs go out there and do it like they did it. Both great guys. I’m happy for Matt.”
Brown is a rare breed — one of only a handful of fighters who’ve been able to remain in the UFC for more than 10 years.
White knows there’s no secret fountain of youth that allows veterans to stay relevant this deep into their careers, but he commends fighters like Brown or Jim Miller, the latter of whom holds the record for fights (41) and wins (24) in the UFC.
“You’ve got him, you’ve got Jim Miller, I mean there’s still a few guys that are out there, everybody’s different [when it comes to longevity], “White said. “When you say how does Matt [have such longevity]? Power is the thing for Matt. Jim Miller is stamina, durability, his submission game.
“Every guy has their own thing, and for younger guys coming up, whatever your thing is — but the most important thing in this sport is durability. Are you durable? Can you not get injured? A lot of these guys keep getting injuries and injuries, and finally you get to a point [where it catches up to you].
“I had shoulder surgery four years ago. I never want to have shoulder surgery again. I don’t even lift heavy weights.”
White said he’s always amazed at the fighters who are able to go through injuries and surgeries, yet keep coming back for more.
“I have so much respect for these guys who want to stay in the game so bad, they keep going through surgery after surgery after surgery,” White said. “How mentally tough you have to be to stay in this sport and keep going through different surgeries and all this stuff, it depends on the person.
“There’s so many more things to go into longevity. It’s not just one simple answer.”