Former UFC Champion Shane Carwin Retires From MMA

Former UFC interim heavyweight champion Shane Carwin is retiring from MMA, nearly two years after his last fight.

Carwin (12-2 MMA, 4-2 UFC) made the announcement on Twitter Tuesday. He wrote, “Officially retired 2day:-) thank you to my family, friends and fans! #dreambig GOD BLESS!!!”

Carwin’s last fight was on June 11, 2011 against Junior Dos Santos at UFC 131. He lost the match by unanimous decision. His fight before that was another loss, this time by arm triangle choke, to Brock Lesnar at UFC 116 on July 3, 2010. It was during this fight that he lost the Interim Heavyweight Championship, which he had won after defeating Frank Mir at UFC 111 on March 27 that same year.

There was no love lost between Carwin and Lesnar before the two even stepped into the Octagon. In July 2009, Carwin slammed Lesnar for flipping off the crowd after defeating Mir at UFC 100.

“The fans are why we do this, Brock, this sport is not about fat paychecks and drama. It is about hard work and sacrifice for a shot to do what you did [Saturday] night,” Carwin said. “It doesn’t matter how much money you make if you can’t earn your peers respect and the respect and love of the greatest sporting fans in the world.”

After his loss to dos Santos, Carwin said he expected to return to the Octagon by the start of 2012. Shortly after that, however, he announced that his back surgery would keep him on the sidelines until the middle of the year. His recovery took longer than he expected, and Carwin hoped to return in the fall. He was supposed to coach The Ultimate Fighter season 16 opposite Roy Nelson, and the two were supposed to fight in December. But Carwin suffered a knee injury and was unable to make the fight.

Before signing with the UFC, Carwin won his first eight fights by first round stoppage and became the Ring of Fire heavyweight champion. He made his UFC debut at UFC 84 against Christian Wellisch and won his first four fights before finally losing to Lesnar.

[Photo credit: / Flickr]

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