Fans received a sad bit of news Thursday night after the weigh-ins for the Ultimate Fighter 15 Finale had concluded when UFC President Dana White announced TUF alumnus (and finalist on the inaugural season) Kenny Florian was retiring from MMA. Florian then took the stage, explaining his injured back had not healed as he’d hoped and would force him to call it quits on a memorable career.
Word of Florian’s condition emerged earlier this year when the 36-year old, who celebrated his birthday last weekend, explained he’d herniated his back while lifting weights and hadn’t been able to train at 100% since.
“I hope that everyone saw a guy who really dedicated his life to the sport and a guy who always worked really hard to evolve in every single fight and every single session, and to get better and hopefully take the sport to another level,” said Florian to the disappointed crowd. “And that’s really what I aimed to do, to get the best out of myself and raise my level every time.”
The 14-6 Florian did the bulk of his work under the UFC banner where he went 12-5 including title-fights at lightweight and featherweight. “KenFlo” leaves the sport with twelve finishes including those in wins over Takanori Gomi, Joe Lauzon, and Clay Guida.
Florian will now focus on his role doing commentary for UFC events as well as co-hosting UFC Tonight.
PHOTO CREDIT – TAPOUT/UFC