Every once in a while, I find myself enjoying a legendary night of sleep. It is a quite rare occurrance for an insomniac who is often lucky to garner four hours of slumber per night.
So imagine my shock and dismay, when I awoke to this news:
That's right folks! The Sultan of Snoozefests, the Blanket from Boston, the legendary prince of questionable decisions (to Diego Sanchez's king) has called it a career. He cited lack of passion for competing as the result for terminating his fruitful career.
I will not lie, this news came as a mixed bag to me. On one hand, to me, he was an incredible bore to watch. I tried to enjoy his fights, but the only one that elicited positive emotions from me was the colossal tilt he participated in against the venerable Tom Breese.
And yet, there was a time I was interested in watching him fight. Around the same time that I began paying attention to the controversial yet entertaining (in fighting contests) Conor McGregor, back in 2012, I became aware of Mr. Pendred. I was told that while McGregor was the more entertaining fighter, Pendred was big-time as well. The first time I saw the "Notorious" one fight live was New Years Eve 2013, against Ivan Buchinger. I loved what I saw, which was pure dominance like most of the previous fights I saw of his through the Youtube, and expected "big tings" from the Irishman.
I never sook out Pendred in a similar manner, and wound up watching him for the first time against the Frenchman Gael Grimaud for the Cage Warriors Welterweight title in March of 2013. Like McGregor, I expected him to be called up to the UFC sooner than later. Nevermind the fact that six of his 11 career victories to that point had come via decision. I expected him to put on a show, and earn a UFC roster spot soon thereafter.
Lo and behold, I tuned in, and witnessed a horror show. Not that there was a hellacious finish or anything to the fight. In fact, it was quite the opposite. Pendred won the fight, via decision, and I was baffled about the fact that people were actually touting him.
Still, I held out hope. Surely, he'd get a UFC spot at some point, and would eventually start finishing people. Go figure, he wound up getting a slot on the Nineteenth season of the Ultimate Fighter. No doubt, he was going to showcase his fighting prowess, and mow down the competition. Alas, such a thing did not occur. Pendred won his first fight in the house in three rounds, before losing a split-decision to eventual winner, and since-released Eddie Gordon. The season was a bust, amongst the worst in TUF history, and Pendred was far from entertaining.
He still got a spot on the UFC roster though. This, my friends, is where his legend truly grew. After getting dominated by Mike King, Pendred pulled off a stunning rear-naked choke in the second round of his UFC debut fight on July 16, 2014. It was one of the first exciting moments of the enthralling UFC Fight Night: Cerrone vs. Miller card. Without a doubt, Mr. Pendred was going to go on a roll thereafter.
Well, that didn't happen. He won his follow-up fight against Gasan Umalatov at UFC Fight Night: Nelson vs. Story in early October. The result? A split decision.
The following two fights he participated in were unanimous decisions, but neither featured an entertaining performance from the Irishman. The first of those fights, which took place against Sean Spencer at UFC Fight Night: McGregor vs. Siver in January 2015, was panned as a horrible decision. The other fight, which took place at UFC 188 against Mexico's Augusto Montano, a finisher who had ended all of his wins via finish, including six straight, may wind up being the worst fight of the year. Needless to say, Pendred was not winning over with fans during his UFC tenure. He may have been 4-0, but the record felt off, and many were calling Pendred the worst fighter to win his first four UFC bouts in the promotion's history.
As a result, when Pendred lost to John Howard in a prelim fight at the famed UFC 189 card just a month later, many felt he would eventually be cut. Alas, such a thing didn't happen, and he wound up being knocked out by Tom Breese (gif pictured above) in the opening round of their contest in last month's UFC Fight Night: Holohan vs. Smolka card. Surely, the man that many believed had only maintained a roster spot due to his relations with Conor McGregor, as well as for European cards, was going to be released soon.
Alas, such a thing will not happen now. The warrior has now declared an end to his career, in what will surely result in split responses from UFC fans.
The fact that Bloody Elbow has not yet reported on this earth-shattering news is a bit surprising. Alas, I understand that putting forth bad news is not something that most people revel in, and in this case, I guess I have to be the bearer of it.
Goodbye, sweet prince. Your lack of striking prowess is something I am sure to never forget. Best of luck in your future endeavors, and I hope you fare even better in them than you did in this sport.