Before the domination of Georges St-Pierre, the UFC welterweight division was ruled by Matt Hughes. The 45-9 self-professed ?country boy? was a force for five years while helping lay the foundation for the organization to grow into the global entity it now is.
However, Hughes hasn?t fought since September 2011 when he was knocked out by Josh Koscheck. Having suffered a strike-based stoppage in his previous bout as well, the 39-year old decided to take an extended break from competition without completely calling it quits. Now, it appears Hughes won?t be returning to the ring after all.
?I?ve not announced my retirement, but right now it looks like I?m fully retired. The UFC still treats me well so I can be retired. It?s just funny, when God puts you on a road, you don?t know where you are going. I have all the faith that he put me there, and I have to thank him from that,? said Hughes in an interview with the Iowa Daily Gate.
As far as Hughes’ future plans, the hard-hitting wrestler will focus on two of his true passions outside of the gym.
?I?ve got a hunting show, which I love, on The Outdoor Channel. I?ll stay with the hunting show. I like to travel. I like to hunt, so that suits me well,? stated Hughes. ?I?m helping my brother with the family farm. Right now, he is in the combine cutting beans. I still am very close to the family farm. It?s funny. When I was a kid I couldn?t wait to get off the farm or stop working. Now, I live real close to the farm, and I go to bed at night thinking about what I?m going to do at the farm the next day. I?m not happy until the next morning when my feet hit the ground and I?m going to the farm. I can?t wait to work.?
With it looking like Hughes has officially hung his gloves up the sport has lost one of its legit legends. Over his thirteen-year career Hughes stopped 35 of the opponents he beat and scored victories over the likes of St-Pierre, Matt Serra, Renzo Gracie, Sean Sherk, and BJ Penn.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFCTweet