We knew this day would come, and the UFC has certainly lost a legend. TUF 1 alumnus, Chris Leben, has decided to hang up his gloves and retire from the sport of Mixed Martial Arts. Following his loss to Uriah Hall, Leben seemingly had nothing left in the tank, and today on the MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Leben made it official.
— Eric Jackman (@NewYorkRic) January 20, 2014
Leben leaves the UFC after a 22 bout career which saw him welcome Anderson Silva to the UFC, win 12 fights, KO Wanderlei Silva in 30 seconds, win two fights in a span of two and a half weeks, and so much more. Leben’s legacy will never fade as the ‘Crippler’ leaves the sport he has put so much work into.
Leben will be remembered for his iron chin, his gritty toughness, and hellacious punching power. Leben never stood down from any man, and was willing to fight at any time. Leben had his troubles, failing two post fight drug tests in his career, but the UFC and Dana White stuck by his side throughout. As a member of the original season of the Ultimate Fighter, Leben was an integral part of the UFC’s growth and expansion.
In the end, Leben ends his career on a four fight losing streak, but he goes out on his shield. I fully expect to see Leben working with the UFC in some other manner other than fighting, and I am sure the fans would want nothing more than to see Leben on our television sets more.