Luke Rockhold Parts Ways With UFC, Enters Free Agency

Former UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold is free of his UFC contract and is pondering his next combat sports move.

Rockhold’s last UFC fight came against Paulo Costa at UFC 278. He lost via unanimous decision and announced his retirement shortly after the decision was read.

Almost immediately after he retired, Rockhold began to tease a return to fighting. He’s alluded to an interest in boxing and other combat sports ventures and is back in the gym working hard towards a comeback.

If Rockhold follows through on his intentions to return to the fight game, it won’t be in the UFC Octagon, where he once was arguably one of the top fighters in the world.

Luke Rockhold On Free Agency: “I Want To Go And F*** Some People Up”

Luke Rockhold
MMA Fighting

During a recent appearance on The MMA Hour, Rockhold announced he’s open for business.

“Your man’s a free agent,” Rockhold said. “Free and clear, and I’m ready and re-inspired to go out there and do something new. I’ve paid my dues, and [UFC COO Hunter Campbell] granted me my wish.

“I need a new setting. I need a new challenge. … You get burned out in the game when you’ve done so much, and you need new obstacles.”

Rockhold went on to clarify that a return to the UFC isn’t off the table.

“That door is always open, but I want to go and f* some people up,” Rockhold said. “If you want bulls*, we can go box, beat up these YouTubers, too.”

Rockhold and the UFC were on shaky ground in recent years, and he was critical of the promotion’s treatment of fighters. However, things seemed to take a positive turn after his ‘Fight of the Year’ candidate against Costa.

Rockhold could be a target of other MMA promotions such as the PFL and Bellator. The PFL, which will launch its ‘super fight’ division this year, intends to enact a 50-50 pay-per-view revenue split between the league and its fighters.

Despite being arguably past his prime, the 38-year-old Rockhold appears to have a plan in motion for his fighting comeback. The relief of parting ways with the UFC could point to exciting new opportunities for him in 2023.

Where would you like to see Luke Rockhold land next?

All quotes from MMA Fighting

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