No professional athlete should be forced to end his career unless one of three people decide enough is enough.
The pro athlete himself.
A member of the medical community.
His, or her, significant other.
Outside of those people, a pro athlete has earned the right in my mind to decide their careers.
Tito Ortiz is one of those people that has put in the time and continues to work extremely hard to remain in peak-physical condition. Ortiz is currently recovering from a neck injury, and plans to compete again once he gets back to 100-percent health.
Many feel Ortiz should retire – since he has retired once, maybe twice or even three times, before – and move on. However, he has done that.
He has other outlets to make money, to earn a living and to support his family.
Ortiz just wants to fight.
If the former UFC light heavyweight champion can successfully be medically cleared, there is no reason anybody out there in Twitter, Facebook, or another MMA site needs to tell him no.
When Brett Favre continued to ignore retirement talks and come out each week, leading his team to win after win, he earned that right.
Kobe Bryant remains on the sidelines, but is training like a rookie looking to make the team to return from an injury. Kobe will do that, and Kobe will succeed because he wants to.
Ortiz is in the same mold: old-school, tireless worker, exceptional athlete.
When Ortiz comes back and everybody jumps him for accepting another fight, I’ll be in the minority rooting to see him compete again.