UPDATED: Chael Sonnen Announces Retirement from MMA
Posted by Jeffrey Harris on 06.11.2014
Highlights from his interview...
UPDATED: Here are some quotes from Sonnen's interview on UFC Tonight where he announced his retirement:
On his failed drug test: "When I woke up yesterday morning, I never would have had the foggiest idea that I was going to get notified that I had a banned substance in my system. These are not performance enhancing drugs, these are not illegal drugs and these are not steroids. They banned testosterone use in Nevada. Now I had to comply with that because I was a user. When you come off this you have to go through a transition phase. We were very transparent about that."
On if he takes responsibility for his failed test: "I absolutely take responsibility. When I spoke with Dana White yesterday, and he was on FOX Sports 1, he was very clear to say that Chael needed to talk to the commission. I agree with that. This was out of competition testing. I'm only the third athlete to go through this. There are some moving parts and a little bit of a learning curve. In the meanwhile, my wife and I were having problems with fertility. This is a matter of health and being a parent and this is a matter of being able to live in the next chapter of my life. At no point was there an attempt to slip around the system. I want to admit fault and accept full responsibility. Yesterday when this came out, I was mad. I was a fighter and I went in defense mode. However ultimately the rules are the rules and I'm a rules guy, I don't want to break the rules. And ultimately it comes down to the athlete to make sure he's in compliance."
On his retirement: "Guys, I've had a great time. I want to thank coaches Roy Pittman and Dave Sanville and I want to thank my coach Clayton Hires. These guys taught me how to fight and they taught me how to set goals and work hard and persevere, and they stood by me. I want to thank FOX and the leadership at UFC. I want to think Bill Brady, who gave me a second wind. He's a member of the Nevada State Athletic Commission and he believed in me when I really needed someone to believe in me. And I owe the second wind in my career to him. And I want to thank the single most important opponent I've ever had, I couldn't have gotten where I am without the dance partner, Anderson Silva. Thank you for the opportunity and the memories. Thank you for the invitation to the barbecue. I want to officially announce my retirement from competitive mixed martial arts."
ORIGINAL: UFC and MMA fighter Chael Sonnen has officially announced his retirement from mixed martial arts. The three-time UFC title challenger made the announcement on UFC Tonight this week, which he co-hosts. You can read his statement during the broadcast and watch a video clip below:
"I want to take an opportunity to officially announcement my retirement from competitive mixed martial artsI had a great time."
" … I want to thank FOX. I want to thank the leadership of the UFC. I want to thank a man named Bill Brady, who gave me a second wind, if you will. He's a member of the Nevada State Athletic Commission, and he believed in me at a time when I really needed somebody to, and I owe the second wind of my career to him. I am proud to call him a friend. I also want to thank the most important opponent I've ever had. I couldn't have got here without this dance partner, and that is of course you, Anderson Silva. Thank you for the opportunity. Thank you for the memories. Thank you for the invitation to the barbecue, even though I didn't take you up on it."
Sonnen made the announcement following the news that he failed a random drug test ahead of his planned fight with Vitor Belfort for UFC 175 in July. Sonnen was forced to withdraw from the fight as a result, and he's now retired from the sport.