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Creed 3’s ending explained

Just like Sylvester Stallone before him, Michael B. Jordan has taken over the reins of the Creed franchise. The star stepped into the director’s chair for the third installment, which is also an attempt to distance this boxing franchise from its Rocky roots. Creed III follows Jordan’s Adonis Creed as he is reintroduced to Damian Anderson, a friend from his childhood whose life took a very different path than Adonis’s.

Now that the movie is out, you might be curious how it ends, and what that ending may mean for the future of the Creed franchise. Without further ado, let’s dive in.

Warning: the rest of this post contains spoilers for Creed III.

How does Creed III end?

CREED III | Final Trailer

Much of the first part of Creed III is spent establishing the long history of Adonis and Damian’s history together. They were friends in a group home before Adonis was taken in by his mother, and remained friends until Damian was arrested for a fight that both he and Adonis had a role in.

Damian was a boxer before he got locked up, though, and his goal remains to become world champion. Adonis, meanwhile, is retired, and managing his own club of boxers who are a little less worn down. After Damian fights dirty to take down one of Adonis’s fighters and claim the world championship, though, Adonis realizes he’s going to have to return to the ring to answer for his past.

Michael B. Jordan and Jonathan Majors face each other in a boxing ring in Creed 3.

After Adonis loses his mother, he returns to training, and the two eventually meet for a lengthy final fight inside of Dodgers Stadium. Ultimately, that fight comes down to the 12th and final round, where Adonis takes a body blow that seems like it might signal his defeat. Adonis gets back to his feet, though, and is able to deliver a body blow followed by two blows to the head to knock Damian down for good and reclaim the championship belt.

Before that, Creed III makes some fascinating stylistic choices, including an extended part of that fight sequence during which the crowd evaporates, and Damian and Adonis are facing off in an empty arena. Jordan has spoken about the way he was influenced by anime in his directing choices, and that’s never more clear than in this sequence.

What does this mean for future Creed movies?

Michael B. Jordan sits on a couch with Tessa Thompson in Creed 3.
Eli Ade/MGM

This could be a fitting end to Adonis’s story, as both he and Jordan are getting older, and may be less likely to keep stepping into the ring as a result. Adonis ends things on good terms with Damian, though, which means that any future installments may include him.

What’s more, Creed III also sets up the fact that Amara, Adonis’s daughter with Bianca, is very interested in becoming a fighter herself. It’s possible that we could be in store for a third generation of boxers, only this time that future will be female. Only time will tell, but given how successful Jordan was in taking over directing duties, we can only hope he’ll get more chances in that role, either in this franchise or outside of it.

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