Chael Sonnen has announced his decision to retire from mixed martial arts after last night’s shock stoppage defeat in the hands of Lyoto Machida.
Chael lost at death no thanks to a Machida’s pair of flying knees that caught him in co-main event, falling to the second.
The loss marked Sonnnen’s second on the bounce having initially fallen to the deafening punches of MMA Legend Fedor Emelianenko through first round TKO at Bellator 208.
In a post-fight conference, the 42-year-old Sonnen insisted his decision to retire from MMA at the Bellator 222 was not premeditated.
“No, I didn’t have that planned,” Chael Sonnen said “I thought I was going to win this fight and call out Ryan Bader. Everything was going my way until it wasn’t. But no, I don’t regret it. It was a No. 1 contender’s match, and I thought it was a big opportunity, and it was. It’s somebody else’s turn.”
Sonnen later showed some courage and confidence in his decision to take a bow out of the MMA.
“You’ve got to be tough in this sport,” Sonnen said. “I feel like I used all of my toughness up. There was some positions in there that, before in my career, I would have walked right through them. I did mind losing to him in his spots – you know, some of the stuff on our feet and those jumping knees and whatnot. But I did mind losing to him in my spots. He was on top of me, and I didn’t think he’d be on top of me. I thought I could have scrambled. I thought I could have gotten up. I used to be tougher. I used to want it more. I used to have more grit, and I just felt like maybe I fired my last bullet. I didn’t have that same grit, and it’s time to move on.”
Sonnen challenged for a UFC championship on three occasions during his career, but the ‘The American Gangster’, fell short of any victory in the three efforts, losing twice to Brazilian Anderson Silva and once to fellow compatriot Jon Jones respectively.