Chuck Liddell Retires After Loss To Mauricio "Shogun" Rua

Chuck Liddell's Retirement Is Further Proof That The UFC Is Not Bending For Anyone

4/19/09 in MMA   |   Pat   |   5233 respect

Chuck Liddell, most likely at the prodding of close friend and UFC President Dana White, has reportedly retired after his loss to Mauricio "Shogun" Rua.

In the end, it's probably the best decision for Liddell. He has lost 4 of his last 5 fights, 3 by knockout. Prior to that, he had enjoyed more success in the UFC than anyone in the history of the organization. He will finish his career with 16 career wins in the UFC. That's a UFC record, and for about 7 years, he was the most dominant fighter in the sport.

At this point in his career, Liddell is still hugely popular and has a huge following. As Dana White pointed out after the fight, they could still put him on any card they want and it would be a huge draw. In fact, that's exactly what other organizations would do. Strikeforce just paraded out an obviously over-the-hill Frank Shamrock as the main event in their most recent card. Liddell, despite his recent struggles in the UFC, is worlds ahead of Shamrock.

The now-defunct EliteXC based their promotion around the viral popularity of street fighter Kevin Ferguson, AKA Kimbo Slice and female superstar Gina Carano. While Kimbo looked decent in a few fights against scrubs, he was exposed quickly by former Ultimate Fighter candidate Seth Petruzelli. Carano is still undefeated among the womens ranks, but has yet to face Cristiane "Cyborg" Santos, believed by many to be the best female fighter in the world, but not as marketable as the more attractive Carano. One of the biggest knocks against Carano (and Santos) has been the issue of making weight, since it has consistently been an issue with Carano, and was a huge deal in Cyborg's latest fight.

Dana White and the UFC have been adamantly against bringing in women, and was extremely outspoken against EliteXC's marketing of Kimbo Slice. In the end, he was vindicated (and then some) when Petruzelli embarrased Kimbo and essentially shut the doors on EliteXC.

By pushing Liddell into retirement, White is proving that he is genuinely looking out for the best interests the sport. There's still tons of money to be made by putting Liddell back into the octagon. There's no doubt about it. But while any other organization would be more than happy to do so, and would compensate Liddell generously, White and the UFC know that Liddell's time has passed, and it's time for him to hang up the gloves. Sure, Liddell could still go out and beat some lower level opponents. He could probably join any other MMA organization and completely wipe out their 205 lb division. Dana White knows that, the rest of the UFC brass know that, and Chuck probably knows it too. But he'll never fight in the UFC again, because they will only accept the best of the best.

Kudos to the UFC for knowing when it's time to cut someone off, and making the tough decision to have one of their all-time greats call it quits. Like it or not, that's what will keep the organization at the top for years to come. We'll miss seeing Chuck Liddell fight, but there are plenty of fighters to take his place in the UFC, and the light heavyweight division is still in good hands.

Rua sends Liddell to the showers one final time [Cage Writer]
Dana White: Chuck Liddell is retired [MMA Junkie]
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9/29/09   |   hapkido_warrior   |   272 respect

tic toc chuck himself doesnt read these...these arent messages to him
i think i see why old articles are popping up now....
perhaps commenting on something more recent would be a better choice tic toc

9/29/09   |   tic_toc_09

I think there is more to Chuck backing out and its not what everybody thinks and as far as beerstudk u have no idea what may have happend and I think after its all said and done he will be back and prove why chuck is and always be the "iceman" or if your anything like me thinks he is and always be the "Badest Man On The Planet" take care of what ever it is chuck and come back for the ones that truely believes in you

4/21/09   |   Illini_Pat

(Edited by Illini_Pat)

i just like everyone else love chuck he represented mma and the U.S.  with great pride and honor such as that of a soldier. which in my eyes is what chuck is and always will be.  it wont be the same without him but we have many great memories and I've heard rumors that we will see alot more of chuck in the future just not in the octagon so I'm interested to see where that goes....

pat Dana on the back for this one he did the right thing nudging chuck in the right direction he proved to all of us its not just about the money the validity of the sport is important to him and the ufc.

4/21/09   |   JoeyMac23

The UFC owes their mainstream popularity almost solely to Liddell. His fights were the first ones i remember getting coverage on ESPN. He was a great champion. As much as age plays a part, the style with which he fights doesn't work well once you slow down. He's a counter-puncher by nature and i don't think he can change that. You can't be a "slow" counter-puncher. His last fights prove that.

4/20/09   |   BluDevil   |   618 respect

Now why can't Roy Jones Jr. take a lesson from Chuck?

4/20/09   |   georgiawalker_2000   |   1 respect

he will be missed it will not be the same without him best wishes for the future chuck

4/20/09   |   joshsanchez   |   57 respect

Chuck Liddell had a great career, but it is clear he hasn't been the same as of late... once you are knocked out so much it just gets easier and easier for an opponent to shut off your lights. He will continue to be a great ambassador for the sport though

4/20/09   |   BearcatFan   |   6 respect

What a shame to never see this great fighter in the octagon again.  Maybe it's for the best, as I don't wish to see him get knocked out again.  Now Dana can roll out his "The Next Chuck Liddell" reality show on Spike. 

4/20/09   |   Raider_Dave   |   47 respect

fremontguy26 wrote:
so why no word from chucks camp about his retirement, why not jus say Dana White fired Chuck Lidell

I agree no news from Chuck himself has came out, but the writing has been on the wall for quite some time.  The only guy Liddell has beaten in his last 5 fights, is the next superstar that will most likely be forced to retire in the same manner.  Chuck vs. Wandy would be a great fight ten out of ten times, but anyone else they fight seems to have found the lights out switch, which spells retirement.  Chuck still is the face of the UFC, and he will continue to be a big ambassador of the sport of MMA and the organization of the UFC.

4/20/09   |   dumpire5153

MMA is trying to continue to establish and maintain its credibilityas a sport first. not as simply as a money making vehicle for promoters and state commissions, not to mention organized crime.  Unfortunately old age gets us all.  Thanks a lot Chuck for leaving with class.

4/19/09   |   rs1990

Chuck is my favorite UFC fighter and it will not be the same without him. I do agree that he is done at this point. He is 39 years some point it had to happen.

Great career will be missed.

4/19/09   |   beerstudk   |   1538 respect

He need's to go.... it's been a great ride and I've made some decent money betting on the 'Iceman', but you can see ever since he lost to 'Rampage' Jackson that he just doesn't have what it takes to compete at the top anymore.

4/19/09   |   whelpley_12

chuck liddell is the brett farve of mma he just wont go away and finally is being pushed into retirement, nice.

4/19/09   |   fremontguy26   |   24 respect

so why no word from chucks camp about his retirement, why not jus say Dana White fired Chuck Lidell

4/19/09   |   BluDevil   |   618 respect

I still like boxing much more than MMA, but boxing could learn a thing or two from Dana about how to run an organization. I like the move, I just hope Liddell does not end up in another promotion or, god forbid, WWE.