'Judo' Gene LeBell retires from MMA judging after Liddell vs Oritz 3

‘Judo’ Gene LeBell retires from MMA judging after Liddell vs Oritz 3

“Judo” Gene LeBell has retired from judging for the California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) following the conclusion of last night’s Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz 3 fight from the Forum in Inglewood.

Referee Herb Dean broke the news for the 86-year old LeBell who is a black belt in both judo and jiu jitsu.

“The legend Judo Gene LeBell has retired from judging. He did s our greatest and a father to all in martial arts. Thank you so much for all that you do. It was a great turn out for golden boys 1st venture into MMA!”

Whether you refer to him as “The Godfather of Grappling” or “The Toughest Man Alive,” LeBell is one of the most well-known figures in the sport.

Aside from his tenure in martial arts competition, LeBell worked as instructor, stunt performer, and professional wrestler. He was often found cageside during Ronda Rousey’s bouts in the UFC.

 

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Last was a very special night for all of us that worked @oscardelahoya @goldenboyboxing MMA event. Not for it being an amazing night, it had more of a meaning. Last night was the man, the myth, the legend, Sensei Judo Gene LeBell’s last event working with our @_csac crew. Judo Gene is not only an icon and a true living legend, he’s a great friend, mentor, meanest, loving and one of the most giving individuals you’ll ever meet. He’s a man that has truly been there, done that and NEVER bragged about it. His beautiful wife Midge and Uncle Gene have always been there for all of us and greeted us with a smile and warm hug. Thank you for your body of work and most importantly thank you for your friendship. There will only be one Judo Gene LeBell. #genelebell #judogenelebell #judogene #judo

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Referee Mike Beltran wrote, “Last was a very special night for all of us that worked @oscardelahoya @goldenboyboxing MMA event. Not for it being an amazing night, it had more of a meaning. Last night was the man, the myth, the legend, Sensei Judo Gene LeBell’s last event working with our @_csac crew. Judo Gene is not only an icon and a true living legend, he’s a great friend, mentor, meanest, loving and one of the most giving individuals you’ll ever meet. He’s a man that has truly been there, done that and NEVER bragged about it. His beautiful wife Midge and Uncle Gene have always been there for all of us and greeted us with a smile and warm hug. Thank you for your body of work and most importantly thank you for your friendship. There will only be one Judo Gene LeBell.”

In 2000, the United States Ju-Jitsu Federation (USJJF) promoted LeBell to 9th Dan in jujitsu and taihojutsu. On August 7, 2004, the World Martial Arts Masters Association promoted him to 10th Degree and in February 2005, he was promoted to 9th Dan in Traditional Judo by the USJJF.