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Cerrone to be inducted into UFC Hall of Fame

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"Cowboy" is getting immortalized.

Donald Cerrone will be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame this summer as part of the Class of 2023, the promotion announced Saturday.

Cerrone's family surprised him cageside at UFC San Antonio after the announcement.

Cerrone is one of the rare inductees who did not win a UFC championship. However, he beat numerous former titleholders and was a longtime contender in the lightweight and welterweight divisions. He retired from MMA in July 2022.

The 39-year-old was a fan favorite and known for his willingness to fight anyone at any time. He competed in the third-most fights in UFC history (38), and owns the second-most wins (23, tied with Andrei Arlovski) and finishes (16, tied with Jim Miller).

Cerrone challenged for the UFC lightweight belt once, falling to Rafael dos Anjos in 2015. Some of his biggest wins came against Eddie Alvarez, Benson Henderson, Charles Oliveira, Miller, Edson Barboza, and Al Iaquinta. He earned 18 postfight bonuses throughout his Octagon run.

"Cowboy" had a rough ending to his career, going 0-6 (1 NC) in his final seven outings. He retired following a submission loss to Miller at UFC 276. Cerrone's last victory was an upset decision over Iaquinta at UFC Ottawa in 2019.

Despite retiring from MMA, it seems possible Cerrone will compete in combat sports again. UFC star and promoter Jorge Masvidal said earlier this week he was close to booking a boxing match between former world champion Roy Jones Jr. and Cerrone for his Gamebred Boxing 4 event on April 1, but Cerrone could not accept the fight due to a prior commitment.

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