What's the rumour?
As reported by journalist Farah Hannoun, Chad Mendes has reportedly called it quits on his MMA career after his loss to Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 232.
In case you didn't know...
The former Featherweight contender turned pro in 2008 and was signed up by the UFC in 2011. Undefeated at that time, Mendes was granted a title shot against Jose Aldo in 2012 after having fought just twice for the promotion. Despite suffering his first MMA loss after getting knocked out by Aldo, Mendes put together a 5-fight win streak to set up a rematch against the once unconquerable Brazilian.
The rematch went the distance and was given fight of the night honours at UFC 179. The Featherweight title, though, continued to elude Mendes. His final crack at the 145 lbs title also ended in disappointment as the Team Alpha Male fighter fell short to Conor McGregor at UFC 189 in July 2015.
He lost his subsequent fight against Frankie Edgar in December that year and was on a hiatus until he returned in July 2018. 'Money' notched up an impressive first-round TKO finish against Myles Jury in his comeback fight and seemed to be on the fringes of another resurgent run towards earning a shot at the Featherweight title.
However, his hopes were dashed by Volkonovski, who finished off Mendes in the second round via TKO. The fight was adjudged the Fight of the Night and stretched the Australian's streak in the UFC to 6 wins on the trot.
While the future looks extremely bright for Volkonovski, the same can't be said about Mendes.
The heart of the matter
There is no confirmation from Mendes's side regarding his rumoured retirement and until the man himself puts out a statement, all we can do is keep our fingers crossed and hope he still has a few more appearances left in him.
The 33-year-old former NCAA Division I All-American is still considered to be a top Featherweight and is currently ranked 5th in the UFC rankings.
Mendes may not have tasted gold during his 7-year UFC career but he unarguably deserves credit for the division's success over the years. We hope he sticks around for a few more fights, because he deserves a proper farewell.