In this study, network performance analysis of a newly proposed cognitive radio wireless network (CRWN) medium access control (MAC) protocol is investigated in order to improve the performance of wireless cognitive radio networks (CRNs). Several MAC protocols have been used in the literature in order to increase the performance of wireless CRNs. In this context, a cognitive radio based MAC protocol is proposed, which is also a solution to the needs of wireless CRNs with high performance results. We propose an autonomous control strategy that recognizes both the primary network and the CRN environment considering the service quality requirements of the wireless CRN environment. Simulation of the network environment is performed with Riverbed Modeler software for more realistic performance evaluation. By selecting various workloads for secondary users, the analysis of different network performance parameters such as throughput ratios, end-to-end delays, packet loss ratios, bit error rates, and energy consumptions reveal the originality of our study. In addition, Slotted Aloha, TDMA, and CSMA/CA based MAC protocols for CRNs used in different studies in the literature are compared with CRWN. As a result, proposed protocol is given about 40% higher performance than Slotted Aloha in terms of throughput and about 36% higher performance than TDMA in terms of delay. Moreover, the proposed CRWN consumes less energy than CSMA/CA.