The post-retirement career for an athlete can take them down several routes. Some athletes will retire from their sport and promote products or services through various endorsement deals.
Other athletes will retire and sell automobiles, while certain athletes will retire and head to the broadcast booth, something that’s been already seen in the MMA world with Michael Bisping, who left the sport in May and is currently a UFC television analyst.
He also delivered color commentary for several episodes of Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series this past season.
With MMA, the opportunity can sometimes extend itself to active athletes, as well. Daniel Cormier has split color commentary duties with standup comedian Joe Rogan on some recent UFC pay-per-views.
Sean O’Connell of the Pro Fighters League was given the opportunity of calling early fights of various cards, including those he appeared on during the just-completed regular season, most recently calling the showcase fights on the Aug. 30 PFL 7 prelims on Facebook Watch.
In the past, he has called regional MMA events, and he currently serves as a host on Sirius XM Satellite Radio.
O’Connell, who is the No. 6 seed in the Light Heavyweight bracket of the PFL playoffs, was interviewed by NBCSN regarding his broadcasting career.
“On the local scene, when I was broadcasting or when I was announcing fights, I was never fighting the same night,” O’Connell said during the interview. “Randy Couture and Bas Rutten and Yves (Edwards), those are all experienced fighters. They know everything there is to know about preparing for a fight. And every single one of those guys was like, ‘This is not a good idea.’”
The interview progressed to O’Connell discussing the task of proving his worth in the booth.
“The fight’s important enough by itself,” he continued, “but I also had to prove to everybody it was okay for me to do this.”
Later on in the interview, O’Connell narrated the footage of his win against Ronny Markes in PFL 2.
As I watched the PFL 7 early prelims on Aug. 30, I was amazed at O’Connell’s broadcasting ability.
Quite simply, the man is a natural, both in the MMA cage and the broadcasting booth. When he retires, he most certainly has a great career as a broadcaster ahead of him.
Not what I hoped for obviously. Thanks to everyone for the support. When it’s all said and done for me, I won’t have a pretty record or a pretty face. But I will be fine. Playoffs next.
— Sean O'Connell (@realOCsports) August 31, 2018
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