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21 Humans Who Make Being Human Look Really, Really Hard

Tag: and now he’s retired

And Now He’s Retiredish: Former WEC Featherweight Champion Mike Brown Says He “Won’t Fight Again”


(Brown ends the Faber Era™ at WEC 36. Photo via Getty.)

Following his unanimous decision win over Daniel Pineda at UFC 146, Mike Brown told Ariel Helwani that he was “getting near the end” of his mixed martial arts career, and that he would give himself two weeks to determine whether or not he would, or could, continue fighting. By the time those two weeks had come and gone, Brown had signed a five fight extension with the UFC. It was a hopeful sign for the former WEC featherweight champion, who had fallen on some hard times after reentering the UFC in 2011 only to suffer back-to-back decision losses.

Unfortunately, Brown’s next fight would see his original opponent, Akira Corassani, replaced by fellow TUF alum Steven Siler, who would in turn finish Brown with punches just under a minute into their preliminary card scrap at Fight Night 26. It was a fight I was personally on hand for, and one made all the more tough to watch as a big fan and follower of Brown’s 12 year career.

And now, it seems that Brown has finally decided to call it quits. Sort of.

In an interview with MMAJunkie published earlier today, Brown stated that he has decided to step away from the fighting aspect of MMA, but avoided using the big r-word in doing so.

I don’t think I’ll fight again,” Brown told MMAjunkie. “I haven’t retired, just in case, because I don’t want to be a guy who walks away and comes right back.”

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And Now He’s (Almost) Retired: Vladimir Matyushenko Calls It Quits in Advance, Before Bellator Fight With Joey Beltran


(This is probably the most modest, understated highlight reel I’ve ever seen. Very fitting, actually.)

After nearly 17 years as a professional MMA fighter, light-heavyweight veteran Vladimir Matyushenko has announced his retirement. Oddly enough, Matyushenko has a fight scheduled for next Friday, April 11th, where he’ll be facing Joey Beltran at Bellator 116. But in his mind, he’s already gone.

“This is my last fight,” the Janitor told Frank Trigg during an appearance on the “Toe to Toe With Trigg” interview show on MMAOddsbreaker earlier this week. “Doesn’t matter win or lose. That’s it. [I'll start] training people, there’s a possibility to open my own gym again. Or I could go the complete opposite direction and work the railroad. I’ll be happy just keeping myself busy.”

I’m going to call it right now: Matyushenko is going to lose to Beltran — not that it really matters, even to Matyushenko himself. (“Doesn’t matter win or lose.”) Remember last month when Cyrille Diabate announced his retirement before his fight against Ilir Latifi, and then got choked out without attempting a single significant strike? Diabate’s desire to win had already left him. He was just fulfilling an obligation. That’s basically what’s happening here with Matyushenko.

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And Now He’s Retired: Steve Bosse Hangs ‘em Up Weeks After Signing with the UFC, Cites Nagging Injuries


(Obligatory gif of Bosse crushing Houston Alexander. You’re welcome.)

Less than a month after signing a multi-fight deal with the UFC, former semi-pro hockey enforcer turned mixed martial arts knockout artist Steve Bosse is calling it quits.

Bosse, who was scheduled to face Ryan Jimmo at the TUF Nations Finale on April 16th until a shoulder injury forced him off the card, cited a recent rash of injuries as the reason for his decision:

“My body is talking to me,” Bosse told Canadian publication La Presse. “It’s time that I make the right decision.”

The former hockey enforcer, who has allegedly partaken in over 200 hockey fights, will retire with a record of 10-1 and wins over UFC veterans Wes Sims, Marvin Eastman, and Houston Alexander (the last of which came via hellacious standing elbow KO, in case you weren’t aware). Additionally, word has it that Bosse holds the distinct honor of being the only hockey player who ever took off his skate and tried to stab someone with it.

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And Now He’s Retired: Jay Hieron Hangs It Up After a Decade in MMA

Jay Hieron announced his retirement from MMA competition today via twitter. He retires with a 23-7 record, accrued over 10 years of competition.

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And Now He’s Retired: Mac Danzig Leaves UFC Due to Concussions, Loss of Motivation


(Photo via Getty)

UFC lightweight Mac Danzig announced his retirement from MMA yesterday, after a 12-year professional career marked by a King of the Cage title reign, a dominant run on The Ultimate Fighter, and inconsistent performances in the Octagon. Danzig most recently competed at UFC on FOX 9 in December, where he lost a unanimous decision to Joe Lauzon. It was Danzig’s third consecutive defeat, and dropped his official UFC record to 5-8.

Considering how disillusioned he’d become with the sport, Danzig’s decision to walk away  shouldn’t come as a surprise. The 34-year-old explained his decision on his tumblr blog, citing recent concussions and loss of motivation as his primary reasons for leaving. Here are some excerpts:

It has been a long, amazing, arduous, thrilling, painful, depressing, spectacular, self-realizing, worthwhile struggle of a journey, for which I have no regrets. I have accomplished a lot in the sport, especially thanks to the many opportunities the UFC has given me. The competition level that I reached is far beyond what I ever imagined being able to do when I first set out to be a fighter in the year 2000. That being said, in hindsight, my enthusiasm and motivation for competition definitely reached it’s peak around 2008 (after 7 years prior of toiling in the minor professional leagues) and it’s been an uphill battle ever since.

I really have been struggling the past few years with contemplating retirement. And with it in the back of my mind, my performance has suffered. Only those closest to me know about this. A true fighter never wants to give it up. The will to compete dies hard. I have had to teach myself that intelligently stepping away does not equal “giving up”.
When you slow down in most other sports, whether due to injury or lack of passion, usually you can still preserve your personal dignity and your physical brain, and keep working hard until you truly know it’s time to leave, but that’s not always the case in MMA.

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And Now He’s Retired: Bart Palaszewski Hangs Up the Gloves After 50+ Fight Career


(Just off camera, Guy Fieri could be heard describing these ribs as “A 1-2 punch to the taste buds from the heavyweight champion of Flavortown. Zabadoo!”)

A 50+ fight veteran of the game since 2002 who has fought under the IFL, WEC, KOTC, and UFC banners, Bart “Bartimus” Palaszewski announced his retirement from MMA on Twitter earlier this week, stating:

It’s about that time! Want to thank @VFDMarketing @ufc @teamcurranmma @SuckerPunchEnt  all my fans but I’m officially hanging it up!

KarmaAteMyCat must be crushed. 

Although he was released from the UFC last May following a three fight skid, Palaszewski steps away from the sport with an impressive 36-17 record and wins over the likes of Tyson Griffin, Ivan Menjivar, and most notably, current lightweight champion Anthony Pettis. Additionally, Palaszewski was a two-time “Of the Night” winner in his brief UFC stint, scoring a KOTN over Griffin at UFC 137 and putting in a FOTN-worthy performance against Diego Nunes at UFC on FOX 10.

But perhaps the most significant thing we can take away from Palaszewski’s career was his absolute fearlessness in the cage. This is a man who was in some absolute wars, people (his battle with Ryan Shultz at the 2006 IFL championships comes to mind), yet never backed down from a fight and always looked for the finish.

We would like to thank “Bartimus” for his devotion to putting on a show in the cage as well as wish him the best of luck wherever the road takes him. Join us after the jump for a look back at some of Palaszewski’s finest moments.

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And Now He’s (Possibly) Retired: Josh Thomson Says “This Might Be It” After Controversial Decision Loss


(Showboat all you like, Thomson, but God will still be on Bendo’s side come decision time. / Photo via Getty)

Josh Thomson is 35 and, if you ask us, should be coming off the biggest win in his career over Benson Henderson. But the UFC didn’t ask us, they asked three judges who gave the nod in UFC on FOX 10‘s main event to Henderson—a controversial decision which put many fans in a state of furious disbelief. Even UFC president Dana White disagreed, and even slighted Henderson’s fighting style.

Alas, a win—no matter how questionable—is still a win. Henderson will climb the ladder, while Thomson and the thumb he broke in the first round will fall down the chute. This is more than Thomson can seemingly bear.

“This might be it, man,” Thomson said at the post-fight press conference when asked about whether his time in MMA was almost over. The frustrations of fighting on the world’s largest stage spilled out of Thomson.

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And Now He’s Retired: Chris Leben Walks Away After 11 Years of Rough-Neckin’


(Leben celebrates his knockout of Wanderlei Silva at UFC 132 in July 2011. It would be his last victory pose in the UFC. / Photo via Getty)

The last time we saw Chris Leben, he was telling his cornermen “I’m done” after a round’s worth of abuse by Uriah Hall at UFC 168. As it turns out, he wasn’t just done for the night — he was done, period. The TKO loss was Leben’s fourth straight defeat in the UFC, and it finally convinced him that there might be more to life than getting kicked in the head for a living.

On yesterday’s installment of The MMA Hour, Leben officially announced his retirement:

It’s been a fantastic, wonderful ride,” Leben said. “I’ve landed more strikes than anybody out there. Definitely highs and lows, ups and downs, but I think I’m starting to realize that, for me, it might be time to make that transition away from competing and get more on the coaching side of things.

After [UFC 168], I wanted to go back and re-evaluate things, make sure that the decision wasn’t based purely on emotion. That it was really what I wanted to do. And now, yes, I can say, I’ve really retired from competing in MMA…

I’m 33 years old now, which isn’t the oldest for a fighter. But like I tell people, it’s not how old you are, but it’s how long you’ve been doing it. And I’ve been doing this game for quite a while.

I’ve got a lot of years ahead of me. I would like to still have my head on my shoulders and have a brain when I’m raising kids and doing all the other stuff that I want to be part of. I think it might just be time for me to gracefully bow out.”

Leben, who recently took a job as a coach at Victory MMA & Fitness in San Diego, discussed how his fight against Uriah Hall was a harsh reminder that he’d gone as far in the sport as his skills would allow him, and could no longer be competitive on toughness alone:

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And Now He’s Retired: Din Thomas, Veteran of the “Olden Age,” Steps Away After 15-Year MMA Career


(Thomas lands some leather on Josh Neer during their UFC Fight Night 13 bout in April 2008. / Photo via Getty)

When Din Thomas made his professional MMA debut in October 1998, Bill Clinton was president of the United States, Google had only existed for about a month, and Ronda Rousey and Jon Jones were both eleven years old. Over the course of his 15-year career, Thomas waged war with the biggest lightweight names of his era — including BJ Penn, Jens Pulver, Matt Serra, and Caol Uno — and re-launched himself into the MMA spotlight in 2006 with an appearance on TUF 4 and a subsequent string of wins over Rich Clementi, Clay Guida, and Jeremy Stephens.

After leaving the UFC in 2008, Thomas reinvented himself as a featherweight, winning his next three fights by stoppage. But in recent years, Thomas’s career momentum has ground to a halt. There was his canceled freak-show against Ricardo Mayorga in May 2010, followed by a car accident on the way to a scheduled match in October 2011. There was a suspension and no-contest after his win over Cody Bollinger in May 2012, and a decision loss to Georgi Karakhanyan at LFC 19 last April. But watching some of his old-school peers go down at UFC 168 was the last straw, and Din Thomas announced his retirement yesterday via the following press release:

UFC 168, Weidman vs Silva, could have driven the last nail in the coffin of any idea that anybody from my era could still be champion. Anderson Silva failed to re-claim his title after suffering the 2 [worst] losses of his career to the undefeated, Chris Weidman. Whether Silva manages to ever return to the Octagon or not, this fight was career ending. Josh Barnett, our last heavyweight hopeful was unsuccessful at moving closer to owning the UFC heavyweight title that he once owned. His plans were foiled by Travis Browne. This trend is not necessarily a testament of the evolution of the new UFC athlete, but provides further evidence that my colleagues from the Golden Age of MMA are now of the “Olden Age” of MMA.

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UFC/Strikeforce Vet Brian Melancon Retires Due to Kidney Problems


(Photo via Getty)

Brian Melancon‘s first year in the UFC has turned out to be his last one. The Texas-based welterweight announced his retirement today, putting an abrupt end to a 10-fight professional career. Here’s his statement (via BloodyElbow):

It has been announced, I am sad to say that my fight career is over. I have been having kidney problems that have gotten much worse recently and just found out that my kidney function has dropped to 47%. If I continue to train, fight, and cut weight then I run the risk of permanent damage. I have been advised by my Specialist to retire and move on and that is what I will be doing. This is not how I wanted to go out, but I have to believe that God has another path for me. Thanks to all of you who supported me throughout my career.

After compiling a 6-2 record with appearances in Bellator, Legacy Fighting Championship, and Strikeforce, Melancon was called up to the big leagues earlier this year, and scored a vicious first-round knockout of Seth Baczynski in his Octagon debut at UFC 162. Less than two months later, he returned to action as an injury replacement against Kelvin Gastelum, and was quickly submitted by rear-naked choke. Melancon was scheduled to fight Robert Whittaker at UFC Fight Night 33 next month, but withdrew from the fight shortly before issuing his retirement statement.

We have no other information about Melancon’s condition, although kidney issues have long been associated with intense weight-cutting in combat sports. Luckily, the 31-year-old isn’t without career options. Melancon holds a Master of Physical Therapy from the University of Texas Medical Branch, and has worked part-time as a home health physical therapist during his MMA career. We wish Brian the best of luck in his life after fighting.

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