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Morning Report: Chuck Liddell says he’s ‘officially retired’ from MMA, interested in possible WWE match

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

So often the MMA space is filled with the unfortunate and continuous issue of older legends refusing to hang the gloves up when they should, so it’s great when eventually, reason wins out. And now it seems like with regard to UFC Hall of Famer Chuck Liddell, cooler heads are finally prevailing. Hopefully.

Liddell is one of the most popular fighters in UFC history but was pushed into retirement in 2010 at the behest of UFC President Dana White after “The Iceman” went on a cold streak, losing 5 of 6 and getting brutally KO’d in four of those losses. But, as so often happens in this sport, Liddell eventually heard the siren song of the cage and returned for a trilogy bout with Tito Ortiz for the inaugural Golden Boy Promotions MMA event in November 2018.

Heading into the bout, fans were concerned about Liddell’s prolonged absence from the cage and those concerns were vindicated with Liddell performing terrible and getting knocked out in the first round by the man he had twice demolished. It was a disheartening performance for most fans to see but even afterwards, Liddell wouldn’t commit to retirement. Now he has. Kind of.

“I’m officially retired right now,” Liddell told TMZ Sports recently. “For now [smiles].”

At 50 years old, another Liddell comeback would be incredibly disheartening as Liddell is one of the most beloved fighters in the history of the UFC and continuing to see him fight would only tarnish his excellent legacy. Liddell was the first mainstream MMA star and his success helped build the UFC brand into the global powerhouse that it is today. Following his first retirement, Liddell worked for the UFC as the Executive Vice President of Business Development but was let go when WME-IMG acquired the UFC in 2016.

Since then, Liddell has dabbled in acting and reality television but has yet to find solid footing on either avenue. But, given his experience in both as well as his copious history of legitimate fighting, Liddell says he would be willing to get back into the squared circle in the context of professional wrestling if someone came calling.

“Of course,” Liddell said when asked about interest in the WWE. “I’d still do WWE, I’d still do pro wrestling. That would be a lot of fun, actually. I’d like that. . . I’m impressed by the stuff that those guys do. They do some crazy stuff.”

MMA and professional wrestling have always had a kissing cousins relationship with MMA and the UFC in particular but recently, even more MMA stars are making the move to scripted combat. Most famously, Ronda Rousey has flourished inside the UFC but former heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez has moved into pro wrestling as have Shayna Baszler, and Matt Riddle, with countless others showing interest in the giving WWE a try.

Will Chuck Liddell soon join their ranks?


Wrestling. Yoel Romero reveals how a 14-year-old Khabib Nurmagomedov watched him wrestle in Dagestan.

Sticking around. Paul Felder quells retirement talk, eyes UFC Dublin main event: ‘It’s got to be something exciting’.

No fun. Dana White agrees Deontay Wilder costume affected performance, ‘That’s why I don’t do any of that bulls*it in the UFC’.

Doubts. Rose Namajunas says she declined Zhang Weili fight amid doubts about fighting future.

Ouch. Karolina Kowalkiewicz gives update on eye injury, to undergo surgery Thursday.


Embedded 2.

Izzy’s journey to champion.

All the standing rear-naked chokes in UFC history.

Masvidal showing some of his tour of Australia.

Anatomy of UFC 248 pt. 3.

Cejudo wants two fights in one night.


Eurobash. Interviews with Paul Felder, Joseph Duffy, Jack Cartwright, and Chris Fields.

UFC Unfiltered. Interviews with Beneil Dariush and Brett Okamoto.



Nate with as direct of an address as he’ll ever give.

Dominick Cruz may finally be getting close to a return.

Khabib never smiles in photos.

Fight life.

Watch Yoel wrestle.


Ryan Hall (8-1) vs. Ricardo Lamas (19-8); UFC Oklahoma City, May 2.

Alonzo Menifield (9-0) vs. Devin Clark (11-4); UFC Oklahoma City, May 2.


Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.



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