Chances are you’ve probably heard by now that Cung Le has hung up the gloves at the age of 42. Le’s decision was relayed publicly on Tuesday, and both UFC President Dana White and UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta have released statements, in which they heap praise on the highlight reel striker.
Le’s retirement comes not long after his highly publicized issues with the UFC, regarding his rescinded suspension, and after it was announced he’s one of several fighters who have launched a class action lawsuit against the promotion. Despite their well documented rift, here is what White and Fertitta had to say about Le in a follow up story at UFC.com.
“Cung Le was a great ambassador of the sport for us in Asia and one of the most exciting middleweights to step foot in the Octagon,” Fertitta was quoted saying. “We wish him well in his retirement and future endeavors.”
“Cung Le was awesome and would take any fight,” White added. “He was such a huge piece of the success of The Ultimate Fighter China. I loved working with him and wish him well in the future.”
There’s no question that Le remained a big draw after he moved over from Strikeforce to the UFC, and that further, he was involved in some pretty intense battles. His loss to Wanderlei Silva was a memorable scrap, and of course, Le’s KO win over Rich Franklin has been featured in a bazillion promo reels by this point.
Now, all that said, considering what’s unfolded in recent months, don’t expect Le to be a UFC commentator or take a role with the company any time soon. It will be interesting to see if he ends up working for Bellator in some capacity, considering his ties to the promotion’s president Scott Coker. If, of course, Le is contractually able to do so.
Le closed out his MMA career with a record of 9-2 and the Sanshou master also went 17-0 during his pro kickboxing days.
The San Jose fighter’s last bout took place in August, 2014, when he was stopped by Michael Bisping at a Fight Night card in Macau.