Anthony “Rumble” Johnson, a MMA light heavyweight who went 23-6 in his career, has passed away. He was 38.
On Sunday, Bellator MMA announced Johnson’s death on social media. Johnson had been ill for more than a year, according to a Bellator spokesman.
“The Bellator Family Is Devastated By His Untimely Death And We Send Our Condolences To His Family And Friends During This Difficult Time,” the announcement said.
Johnson had 17 knockouts and six decisions in his career. His last fight took place in May 2021.
Johnson posted on Instagram in September 2021 that he needed “as many prayers as I can get” and was in a battle, noting that it was “not COVID.” Johnson posted on Instagram on May 17 that his doctor had told him there had been “significant improvements,” which was good news.
🙏 It is with great sadness we acknowledge the passing of Anthony “Rumble” Johnson.
The BELLATOR family is devastated by his untimely passing and we send our condolences to his family and friends during this difficult time. pic.twitter.com/TqZzN1wquY
— BellatorMMA (@BellatorMMA) November 13, 2022
However, Johnson’s manager told Espn in late October that Johnson was “going through some health problems right now. He’s not doing well.”
Daniel Cormier, a two-time Olympian and MMMA fighter, posted his condolences online, writing, “For A Guy Who Struck Fear Into So Many People’s (Sic) Heart, He Was A Caring Person.”
Cormier stated, “from random text to check-ins during losses.” “What a Person He Was. Life Doesn’t Always Seem Fair.”
Johnson competed in the UFC from 2007 to 2017, most notably losing two light heavyweight title fights to Daniel Cormier. Johnson competed in three weight classes for the UFC, establishing a reputation as a powerful puncher and fan favourite in MMA for his aggressive, striking-based style.
Johnson left the UFC in 2017 after Cormier beat him for his second title. In 2021, he returned for one fight with Bellator before his health problems got worse.
Rest Easy my brother. For a guy who struck fear in so many peoples heart Anthony Johnson was a caring person. From random text to check ins during loss. What a person he was, Rumble will be missed. Sometimes life doesn’t seem fair. Horrible news #RIP #Rumblesquad @Anthony_Rumble pic.twitter.com/HH2SO1dPj7
— Daniel Cormier (@dc_mma) November 13, 2022
23 wins. 17 KO/TKO. RIP Rumble. pic.twitter.com/NBzEEtmrMx
— FullCombat (@FullCombat_) November 13, 2022