"Once, I had an opportunity to fight in Mexico," Severn said. "It was in a cockfighting pit. The idea of the show was to start with rooster fights, then do dog fights, and finish as the main event with human beings. This organization wanted no rules at all, and you could wear jeans and cowboy boots. I turned that one down. I thought, 'I may win, but I may not get out alive.’"
Severn recently announced his retirement, and his advice to young fighters is a bit intriguing. He thinks a fighter should tapout when they start taking too many blows to the head.
"To utilize an old saying, you live by the sword, you die by the sword," Severn said. "Liddell at one point was close to two records in UFC, knocking out the most people, and being knocked out the most. That’s not a dual record you want to have. Every time you get hit in the head, you will suffer some type of damage, even if it’s superficial. You can take blows to the body, but the head, no. The little piece of Jell-O called the brain isn’t meant too be jostled around like that."
Severn has already seen what can happen to MMA fighters once they hit their mid-30s.
"There are guys 15 or 20 years my junior, and you try to have a conversation with them, and it’s almost inaudible," Severn said. "Some can’t even complete a sentence and make a point. It’s a tough conversation. In today’s mixed marital arts matches, you don’t see actual tap outs from punches. You see one athlete will turtle up, and the other guy on top is picking angles and choosing his shots until the referee stops it. The mentality is that it’s more honorable to have a referee stop the fight than tap out to strikes. I think if you take a half-dozen or a dozen unnecessary shots, the problems may not show up right way, but they will show up over time. Even the damage I’ve received, maybe five to 20 years down the line, it may come to the surface."