At Bellator 222 this past Saturday, one fan favorite north of 40 decided to walk away, and another decided to stick around.
Chael Sonnen (30-17-1 MMA, 2-3 BMMA) was stopped by Loyto Machida with a second-round TKO in the co-main event at Madison Square Garden in New York. Afterward, he chose retirement at 42 after a career that included three UFC title challenges and plenty of memorable moments.
And though he wasn’t fighting at the same event, Fedor Emelianenko (38-6, 2-2), also 42, announced with Bellator president Scott Coker that he had signed a new deal with the promotion that will keep him around until he decides to call it quits, too.
After Bellator decision wins over Wanderlei Silva and Quinton Jackson, Sonnen lost to Emelianenko in the heavyweight grand prix semifinals by first-round TKO to bounce from the tournament. He moved back to light heavyweight for what proved to be his swan song against Machida, leaving him 3-6 in his final nine fights.
Emelianenko was knocked out by Matt Mitrione in his Bellator debut two years ago, but bounced back with first-round TKO wins over Frank Mir and Sonnen to reach the heavyweight tournament final against 205-pound champion Ryan Bader – who finished him with a 35-second knockout.
Given their ages and mixed results of late, we were wondering in our latest Daily Debate question for MMA Junkie Radio which one of them made the right decision – or if both or neither made the smart call.
The results, via Twitter:
To hear the MMA Junkie Radio hosts discuss the topic, watch the video above.
MMA Junkie Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at 8 p.m. ET (5 p.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia, Brian “Goze” Garcia and Dan Tom. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio. You can also check out www.siriusxm.com/siriusxmfightnation.
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Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie
Read the full article here: Daily Debate: Did Chael Sonnen and Fedor Emelianenko make right career moves at Bellator 222?