Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal Retires From MMA

The wrestler turned mixed martial arts star is leaving the game at 38 years old.

Former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion and Rizin heavyweight Grand Prix Champion, Muhammad “King Mo” Lawal has retired from the sport of mixed martial arts.

The wrestler turned mixed martial arts star is leaving the game at 38 years old.

Lawal let the world know via social media. His retirement comes after Alexander Gustafsson who retired after a submission loss to Anthony Smith in Sweden over the weekend.

https://youtu.be/zlz5r5UYsBo

Raised in Texas by a Nigerian mother, Lawal took to wrestling in high school. He went on to compete at the collegiate level at the University of Central Oklahoma. Eventually, he finished in 2nd place in the nation in 2001 and became a national champion in 2002.

Lawal was able to move to a Division I school, Oklahoma State University becoming a Big Conference 12 champion and All-American in 2003.

After narrowly missing the entrance for the 2008 Olympics, he decided with a little advice from a friend and current UFC heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, to enter the world of MMA.

Unlike many American fighters of color, Lawal started his career and his first four wins were in Japan. By his seventh fight and second year as a professional, he won the Strikeforce light heavyweight title by defeating Gerard Mousasi.

Although he lost the title via TKO to Rafael Cavalcante on his next outing, Lawal would eventually become the Rizin Heavyweight Grand Prix winner in Japan via first round KO.

https://youtu.be/B3S68hlJWFE

From his legendary beefs and fights against rival, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, to his legendary dismissal of Dana White and the UFC, Lawal has always been all heart.

One of the most conscious men in MMA, Lawal is the silent connector of men of color in combat sports. Constantly crossing the combat party line, Lawal is a boxing aficionado that stays as connected in boxing as he is in MMA.

Lawal formerly hosted a podcast on TSL called “On The Throne with King Mo” where listeners learned about his boxing IQ as he talked to boxers.

Sporting his signature crown and flanked by beautiful women holding umbrellas, the game will never be the same without King Mo in it.

Rhett Butler is a Boxing Writer Association of America Journalist, Play-By-Play Commentator, Combat Sports Insider, and Former Mixed Martial Arts and Boxing Promoter. The New York City native honed his skills at various news outlets including but not limited to: TIME Magazine, Money Magazine, CNN's Wolf Blitzer Reports, and more. Rhett hosts the PRITTY Left Hook podcast, a polarizing combat sports insider's take featuring the world's biggest names.