Nate Marquardt is calling it a career, and what a wild one it was.
The former UFC middleweight title challenger announced Thursday via hishe's retiring after competing professionally in MMA for over 18 years. The revelation comes after he dropped a split decision to Cezar Ferreira – his third straight loss and ninth in his past 12 fights – at UFC Fight Night 120 last month.
Marquardt will continue training regularly, and now aims to dedicate himself to his “sports ministry” Resurrection Jiu-Jitsu and a degree at Gateway Seminary.
The 38-year-old failed to add a UFC title to his trio of Pancrase belts and Strikeforce crown, falling to Anderson Silva by first-round knockout in his sole promotional championship bout at UFC 73. But, contrary to his second promotional stint, Marquardt mounted a respectable UFC run in his first go after coming over from Pancrase in 2005, seeing his hand raised over the likes of Jeremy Horn, Martin Kampmann, Demian Maia, and Rousimar Palhares.
After being handed his walking papers due to a failed physical prior to an ill-fated 2011 date with Rick Story, Marquardt debuted with Strikeforce in the summer of 2012, trouncing Tyron Woodley by fourth-round KO to win the welterweight strap he had dropped to Tarec Saffiedine six months later. He rejoined the UFC upon Strikeforce's dissolution in 2013, but his second stint didn't go nearly as swimmingly as his first, as he won just three of 11 contests before hanging up his gloves.
Marquardt retires with a professional record of 35-19-2 and a UFC slate of 13-12.
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