Amanda Nunes doesn’t plan on returning to fighting anytime soon due to the damage caused to her body.
On June 10 of this year, ‘The Lioness’ defended her UFC women’s bantamweight title with a unanimous decision win against Irene Aldana. Shortly after the official decision was announced, Nunes removed her gloves and retired from fighting.
There is a stereotype of high-level combat sports athletes returning to competition after retiring. Therefore, some people have questioned whether or not Nunes will ever step back into the Octagon. During an interview with Sports Illustrated, ‘The Lioness’ had this to say about potentially fighting again:
“I cannot kick as much anymore. My legs have nerve damage from over the years. So things are starting to get harder for me. My shoulders need rest, my knees. Even my teeth need work after getting hit in the mouth so many times. I don’t see myself back in the cage any time soon. I am looking forward to a break. My body needs this.”
Nunes followed up by providing some optimism for those who want to see her fight again:
“I need to take care of my body and give it a break. We’ll see what happens in the future.”
— UFC (@ufc) June 11, 2023
Amanda Nunes details her growing desire to retire during the UFC 289 fight week
Before fighting on June 10, there were rumors of Amanda Nunes potentially retiring in the near future. With that said, most people didn’t predict she would end her career on that night. It turns out that Nunes hadn’t officially made her decision until the UFC 289 fight week.
During the same interview with Sports Illustrated, Nunes had this to say about how her desire to retire grew before fighting Irene Aldana:
“That week, the idea of retiring slowly crept up on me. Fight week is intense. I had so much to do. It was very tiring. Every interview, I was asked, ‘When are you going to retire?’ I definitely felt exhausted. I needed a break. The weight cut, everything. I never thought I would have the strength to retire, but I need this break. It was the right moment to go.”
If Nunes decides to stay retired, she will walk away with a UFC record of 16-2, with her only losses against Cat Zingano and Julianna Pena. The former two-division UFC champion established a legendary resume featuring wins against Ronda Rousey, Valentina Shevchenko x2, Cris Cyborg, Holly Holm, and Miesha Tate.