The era of “The Cringe” is over as Henry Cejudo is no longer the UFC bantamweight champion.
Thank you for the awesome experiences uncle @danawhite I will forever be grateful. Thank you for taking a chance on the sport that people thought would never make it. To all my coaches and fans it been a wonderful ride. Triple C is out 🎤 #retiredontop pic.twitter.com/ZoHa3asoDU
— Henry Cejudo (@HenryCejudo) May 25, 2020
On Sunday, Cejudo’s (16-2) champion status removed on the official UFC rankings. Cejudo took notice and the Olympic gold medalist issued a statement on Twitter.
Henry Cejudo: I am retiring with two belts. Thank you, UFC. 🙏
The UFC: pic.twitter.com/vnp48bqETf
— MMA On Point (@OnPointMMA) May 25, 2020
The usual gregarious Cejudo was humble in the statement, thanking UFC president Dana White, his coaches and the fans.
“Thank you for the awesome experiences uncle @DanaWhite. I will forever be grateful. Thank you for taking a chance on the sport that people thought would never make it. To all my coaches and fans it been a wonderful ride. Triple C is out.”
Cejudo successfully defended his bantamweight title for the first time with a second-round TKO win over Dominick Cruz. The win happened at UFC 249 earlier this month, which was the UFC’s effort to bring live sports back to the world. They did a set of three fights at the Vystar Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.
Here is the most accurate UFC Pound for Pound Goat list:
1) Conor McGregor
2) Henry Cejudo
3) Demetrious Johnson
4) Anderson Silva
6) Valentina Shevchenko
7) Daniel Cormier
8) Cain Velasquez
9) Stipe Miocic
10) Jon Jones
— UFCStats💭 (@TheUFCStats) May 23, 2020
Cejudo shocked the world by revealing his unexpected decision to retire.
“I’m happy with my career. I’ve done enough in the sport. I want to walk away,” Cejudo said. “I want to enjoy myself. I’m 33 years old – I have a girl now who’s watching back home. I eventually want to start a family. Since I was 11 years old, I sacrificed my whole life to get where I’m at today.
“I’m not going to let nobody take that from me. So I’m retiring tonight. I’m 33 years old. I’m happy with my career. Uncle Dana (White), I want to say thank you for everything. You’re the man. … Thank you so much, but ‘Triple C’s’ out. You guys don’t have to hear my ass no more.”
Henry Cejudo is a better champion than Demetrious Johnson? LMFAOOOOOO pic.twitter.com/9LR6Ica0aO
— Brandon The Truth 💯 (@Brandon_Nocaute) May 20, 2020
Cejudo’s reign was controversial after he defeated UFC long-reigning champ Demeterious “Mighty Mouse“ Johnson at UFC 227 via split decision. He donned a persona labeled by fans as “The King of Cringe” during a time when more MMA fighters are becoming characters.
His wins as an athlete as an Olympic gold medalist and two weight class world champion in the UFC, Cejudo had a model career. It earned him the self-made nickname “Triple C” for three-way world champion.
However, Cejudo is not without controversy. A constant troll on social media, Cejudo had choice words for fellow fighter Aljamain Sterling. He called him Alja-mima causing a storm of racial controversy. Cejudo was chided for the remarks by UFC broadcaster of color, Karyn Bryant and more.
To say something racially insensitive out of ignorance doesn’t make you racist. Not apologizing for your ignorance when educated on why calling @funkmasterMMA “Aljamima” is offensive starts moving the racist needle in the wrong direction.
— Andreas Hale (@AndreasHale) February 18, 2020
Although complicated, Henry Cejudo will go down as one of the best mixed martial artists in history. The question now is, will he really stay retired?