Henry Cejudo Retires After Defending UFC Bantamweight Champion Title at UFC 249

Henry Cejudo of the United States speaks to the media after his bantamweight title fight against Dominick Cruz of the United States in 2020. Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images

Henry Cejudo is walking away from mixed martial arts while on top. Shortly after defending the UFC bantamweight champion title at UFC 249, Cejudo announced he is retiring from the sport.

UFC 249 saw Cejudo (16-2) making his first attempt to defend the title against Dominick Cruz (22-3). The 33-year-old American needed just two rounds to finish the job, knocking out Cruz in the second round with 0:02 seconds left on the clock.

After the match concluded, Cejudo gave a new dimension to the fight announcing it will be his last. 

 “I’ve done enough in the sport,” said Cejudo while announcing his retirement. “I want to walk away and enjoy myself. I’m 33 years old. I have a girl now, watching me from back home. Since I was 11, I’ve sacrificed my life to get to where I was tonight. I’m retiring tonight. Uncle Dana [UFC president Dana White], thank you. Everybody here, thank you so much.”

While the news came as a surprise to most of the MMA world, White wasn’t so shocked.

“It really didn’t shock me,” said White during his appearance on SportsCenter. “Cejudo has been talking about retirement to us for months. I’m of the belief that if you’re talking about retirement in the fight business, you should probably retire.

Henry Cejudo walks away following some impressive achievements in wrestling and MMA. After winning the Olympic gold in Beijing in 2008 among numerous other medals during his freestyle wrestling career, Cejudo decided to enter the world of mixed martial arts.

Cejudo had fights with several different organizations before making his UFC debut in 2013. He won his first title in 2018, taking the UFC Flyweight Championship belt after defeating Demetrious Johnson at UFC 227.

Cejudo defended the Flyweight Championship against T.J. Dillashaw in early 2019 before knocking out Marlon Moraes at UFC 238 for vacant UFC Bantamweight Championship.