After a 23-6 record in mixed martial arts, Anthony “Rumble” Johnson has passed away. He was 38.
Johnson’s death was reported by Bellator MMA on Sunday via their social media channels. The illness, according to a Bellator representative, had plagued Johnson for over a year.
The BELLATOR family is “devastated” by his death and “sends condolences to his family and friends” during this difficult time, according to the statement.
Johnson won 17 by knockout and lost six by decision over the course of his career. It was May of 2021, his final bout.
In September of 2021, Johnson wrote on Instagram that he was in a battle and could use “as many prayers as I can get,” adding that the enemy was “NOT COVID.” Johnson announced on Instagram on May 17 that his doctor had given him the good news, stating that there had been “big improvements.”
Late in October, however, Johnson’s manager told ESPN that Johnson was “going through some health problems right now… he’s not doing well.”
Olympic gold medalist and mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter Daniel Cormier tweeted his condolences, writing, “for a guy who struck fear into so many people’s hearts Anthony Johnson was a caring person.”
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“From sporadic messaging to loss-related check-ins,” Cormier remarked. What a man he was… sometimes the world just doesn’t seem to be fair.
Dead At 38: Former UFC Fighter Anthony “Rumble” Johnson
Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, 38, who fought in the UFC from 2007 to 2017 and finished with a 13-6 record there and a 23-6 record overall, passed away on Sunday.
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Johnson finished his MMA career with a 23-6 record that included 17 knockout wins. Following a 2017 title fight loss to Daniel Cormier at UFC 210, Johnson walked away from the sport for four years before returning for one fight at Bellator 258.
Kamaru Usman, the former welterweight champion of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, was a close friend of Johnson’s. Johnson preferred to keep his illness a secret and was known to be reclusive. Usman called Johnson, Rashad Evans, who is now in the UFC Hall of Fame, and current UFC lightweight Michael Johnson “the fantastic four.”
On Sunday, Usman revealed that a few weeks ago, he had expressed concern to one of his coaches that he would receive a call delivering bad news.
Usman described him as “kind of like a turtle” to Yahoo Sports. “Most of the time he’d be in that shell, but every once in a while he’d break out of it and reveal the real him. Sometimes he’d peek his head out, introduce himself, and then duck back inside.
He claimed Johnson had visited him at home a while back and that they had a pleasant conversation, but he was still fuzzy on the specifics.
It reminded me of [the late actor] Chadwick Boseman, Usman said. Chadwick kept his problem to himself, and when he passed away in 2020, everyone was taken aback.
Bellator MMA announced on Sunday that former MMA fighter Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, who competed in the UFC from 2007 to 2017, had passed away. Age-wise, he was 38.
In a statement, Bellator MMA expressed their deep sorrow over the loss of Anthony “Rumble” Johnson. The Bellator organization is heartbroken over his untimely death and offers its condolences to his loved ones at this time.
Johnson won 23-6 in the ring as a pro, with 17 of those victories coming by way of knockout. His most recent title defense came in UFC 210 against current light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier. His last fight took place at Bellator 258 on May 7, 2021.
UFC president Dana White praised Johnson, saying, “He was always a great kid,” as reported by Iole. The one-punch knockout power he possessed was unmatched, and he was always involved in entertaining bouts. In general, he was a decent person. My heart goes out to his loved ones at this time.
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