Former UFC heavyweight title challenger Jeff Monson has announced his upcoming retirement having fallen to defeat against a Russian Neo-Nazi in his most recent outing.
Across a career spanning 25 years and over 100 professional combat sports fights, Monson has thrown hands with names like Daniel Cormier, Fedor Emelianenko, Tim Sylvia, Chuck Liddell, and Aleksei Oleinik.
As well as winning gold in four promotions, “The Snowman” challenged for a belt on MMA’s biggest stage, falling short against Sylvia in the co-main event of UFC 65: Bad Intentions, which was headlined by the Georges St-Pierre and Matt Hughes rematch.
Nowadays, Monson has followed the route of many veterans in extending his career beyond his physical means, with the American-Russian still competing at the age of 51. However, it seems that the end is here, with a defeat to a Russian neo-Nazi appearing to force the decision to retire — as it no doubt should.
At the Ren-TV Fight Club event in Moscow this past weekend, Monson suffered a unanimous decision loss at the hands of Vyacheslav Datsik, a fighter previously convicted of robbery, assault, threats of murder, and brothel raids. That’s not to mention a self-professed history with neo-Nazi groups and as a white supremacist, as well as an escape from a psychiatric unit.
Certainly not an ideal individual to be locked in a cage with. Although, with Monson having previously faced a convicted murderer and drug trafficker, it’s hardly a surprise…
Monson Announces The End Of The Road
Following his latest loss, ‘Russian-spirited’ Monson, who is an anarcho-communist and was granted Russian citizenship by President Vladimir Putin in 2018, announced his intentions to finally hang up his gloves for good later this year.
Monson told reporters at Saturday’s event that he’ll return for one final bout in October having promised his loved ones that he’d end his career.
“I will fight again in October,” Monson said. “And after that I will retire. I promised to do this to my family.” (h/t Bloody Elbow)
Monson has become somewhat of a controversial figure since switching his allegiance to Russia a number of years ago. Having become a citizen of the Luhansk region in Ukraine, an area heavily comprised of Russian separatists, Monson spoke out in support of this year’s invasion of the Eastern European nation.
There’s perhaps an element of irony in Monson’s support of the narrative that Russia is “trying to help the people of Donbas and are trying to rid Ukraine of Nazis and fascism” given that Saturday saw him beaten by a known Russian neo-Nazi…
What do you make of Jeff Monson’s retirement announcement?