Brian Stann explains why he left MMA, admits he ‘absolutely’ misses being an analyst, but ‘I love what I’m doing now’


Brian Stann has no current plans to come back to MMA, but there have been offers.

Stann retired from active competition in 2013 and went immediately into the UFC’s commentary booth, garnering near-universal praise for his work calling fights. Stann was a commentator on ACC football matches for Fox Sports Net for four years before he decided to pursue a business career. While he’s been out of the game for almost five years, Stann sometimes feels the siren call of MMA.

“I miss it,” Stann said to Ariel Helwani during The MMA Hour .. “It’s so funny, my fiancee Michelle will just start dying laughing if we’re in a room full of friends and they ask me a question, I get to go back into being the analyst, she starts laughing. It’s a job I love. There’s never gonna be a more fun job that exists. Talk about low stress. The hard work of preparing for big fights is being done. It’s not easy to earn a living.

“The only thing about it I remember, though, is I remember feeling a little unfulfilled. It was interesting to see the leaders of this business, how they were preparing the company to sell, and the challenges that come with managing a company. You have to think about how to finance investments, what capital structure you will use, how to create jobs and how to innovate. As an analyst you are responsible for all this. You’re thinking around, ‘OK, what kind of content do I need to generate for my own social media to move my brand forward? Do I need to start my own YouTube channel?

“So while I absolutely miss being an analyst, and it’s probably the most fun job I’ll ever have, and the least amount of stress, I love what I’m doing now. However, every fight I see makes me want to put on my hat again and those in the room next to me get tired of hearing me speak .”


Stann is currently the CEO of Hunt Military Communities, a privatized military housing company that services over 120,000 military residents and families; he took the position at the end of 2021. Prior to that, he was the COO of FirstKeyHomes, a real estate investment trust. Stann apparently was approached not long ago by a well-known MMA organisation, hoping to entice Stann back into the sport.

“I was, by one of the larger players,” Stann said. “They approached me and I took a really hard look at it. This was a difficult time. It was difficult timing. There were two choices. I could either go to work in a new sector for the biggest private equity firm in the world while I completed my executive MBA or stay with my industry and do something more entrepreneurial. This will be funded by entrepreneurs who are more cautious and take on more risks. I chose the safest path because I have a large family. It’s not always easy to look back and question whether I made the right decision. Because running a company in an industry I have loved for so many years would be great fun. But ultimately, it led me to where I am now, and I love my current company.”

Strann was a notable signer with the PFL to head its Fighter and Competition/Rules Committee. While he didn’t say what company offered him this position, the former WEC lightweight champion noted that “you are probably guessing correctly” and decided not to accept the job.

“It was to be an executive,” he said. “It was to be a No. 2 guy, to run all operations and do matchmaking and such. It was a great opportunity that I investigated, but you can’t just choose .”

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