Jake Ellenberger did not have the storybook ending he would’ve wanted in front of his home fans at UFC Lincoln in Nebraska. “The Juggernaut” suffered a first-round TKO loss to Bryan Barberena, dropping him to 2-9 in his last eleven fights.
After Barberena had his post-fight interview, attention turned to the 33-year-old Ellenberger, who announced to the crowd at Pinnacle Bank Arena that he was retiring.
“There’s no better place for me to set the gloves down and say ‘it’s time to move on’ than the same place we started — here at home in Nebraska — with my family, my friends, and everybody, I love you! Time to set ‘em down,” Ellenberger said.
In his prime, Ellenberger was among the top welterweights in the sport. He once rode a six-fight winning streak that included a sensational first-round thrashing of Jake Shields. Ellenberger’s rise towards a title shot came crashing down after a knockout loss to Martin Kampmann in 2012. The heavy-handed Ellenberger won two straight after that fight, but a decision defeat to Rory MacDonald began his current 2-9 slide, and he’s made the decision to stop fighting.
Ellenberger made his professional MMA debut in 2005 and retires with a record of 31-15, with notable wins over the aforementioned Shields, Nate Marquardt, Mike Pyle, Diego Sanchez, and Matt Brown.