The King is on vacation, long live the king.
Gordon Ryan announced his retirement from professional grappling in an Instagram post earlier this evening. The post featured numerous photos of Ryan on vacation with Nathalia Santoro, and explained that he’d be competing in a few already scheduled bouts in early 2020 but that he’s not be making any appearances in major tournaments.
“Thank you and farewell. Its been years since i did anything besides training. I haven’t taken a vacation in 5 years. On this trip i realized that there’s more to life than being stuck in a blue basement every day killing myself. i have proven im the best over and over again and now its time for a change. Its time to start the next chapter of my life. i have some matches scheduled early in 2020 which ive committed to and will compete in but consider 2019 the last year of my competitive life span. I dont need anything else in life. All i want and need now is to explore the world with the ones i love and help my team mates achieve twice as much as i have as well as help people around the world through instructional videos. i know it will pain a lot of you to see me go but this is something im sure about. i hope all the fans understand and have enjoyed the rise thus far. its not over. I couldnt have asked for a better career. love you all ♥️. 📸 @jeffreyschu. @heysonnyy”
Assuming this is a real decision, the professional BJJ scene will be losing its brightest star very soon. Although after winning double gold at ADCC and filling his kill diary with some of the biggest legends in the sport, you can’t really blame the guy for calling it a day. Currently Ryan stands at a staggering 77 wins and 5 losses, a fine record to end a career on.
For greater perspective, here’s a small list of just a few of the things Ryan has won courtesy of BJJ Heroes.com.
- 1st Place ADCC World Championship (2017 / 2019**)
- 1st Place IBJJF World No-Gi Championship (2018**)
- 1st Place IBJJF Pans No-Gi Championship (2018**)
- 1st Place Quintet 3 (2018*)
- 1st Place EBI 6 (2016*)
- 1st Place EBI 8 (2016)
- 1st Place EBI 11 (2017)
- 1st Place EBI 14 (2017*)
- 1st Place Kinektic 1 (2019)
- 1st Place Grappling Industries (2017*/2016*)
Given Ryan’s history of trolling and callouts (and, honestly, the sheer number of athletes who come back from “retirement” over and over again), it’s possible that we’ll all wake up to another post that simply says, “SIKE!” But if this is truly the end for one of the most exciting grapplers in the world, we wish him the best in whatever endeavors he decides to pursue next.