Matt Hughes

Matt Hughes retires, joins UFC’s front office as VP of Athlete Development and Government Relations

Matt Hughes. Photo courtesy of MMA Bay.

Former two-time UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes has officially announced his retirement and joined the UFC's front office in the brand-new role of Vice-President of Athlete Development and Government Relations.

UFC COO Lawrence Epstein broke the news prior to this afternoon's pre-fight press conference for UFC on FOX 6 in Chicago. According to Epstein, Hughes will be overseeing the UFC's new conduct policy, which will seek to help fighters hold themselves to a high standard, both in and out of the cage.

“Hughes will be an invaluable resource for UFC athletes,” Epstein said in a press release to the media. “Leveraging the background and expertise he gained over a Hall of Fame career, Hughes will be dedicated to providing guidance on a wide range of issues athletes face inside and outside of the octagon.

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Matt Hughes Discusses Future in Fighting, Decision on Retirement

Former longtime UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes joined the panel on Tuesday's episode of "UFC Tonight" on FUEL TV to discuss his future with the UFC as well as his pending decision to fight one more time and his thoughts on a potential opponent as well.

Countdown to UFC 135 Premieres Tonight

Image courtesy of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Be sure to checkout the premiere of "Countdown to UFC 135" which debuts tonight at 11 PM ET on Spike and profiles this weekend's UFC light heavyweight title bout between current champion Jon "Bones" Jones and former title holder Quinton "Rampage" Jackson as well as a pivotal welterweight bout between Matt Hughes and Josh Koscheck.

Quote of the Day: Koscheck Excited for Long-Overdue Meeting with Hughes

Josh Koscheck. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

— "There's no real issue with me and Hughes. It is just he said it numerous times he didn't want to fight any of us from AKA, my train[ing] team, and it is long overdue he fights one of us. Now I am going put Matt Hughes in his place. When he was on top, he wouldn't give any of us "kids" our shot at him. He never manned up. Now he's been forced to fight me and this is going to be so much fun."

Josh Koscheck discusses his return to action as a replacement opponent for Matt Hughes at UFC 135, which takes place on September 24 in Denver, Colorado with Sportsnet. ca.

UFC 103 Notes: Belfort Moves to Forefront of Middleweight Title Picture

Vitor Belfort. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

A win over Rich Franklin was expected to make Vitor Belfort an instant contender for Anderson Silva’s UFC middleweight title. But according to UFC President Dana White, Belfort may have positioned himself as the leading candidate for Silva’s next title defense, even before Dan Henderson and Nate Marquardt.

“You know, I think he might be ready now,” White said at last night’s UFC 103 post-fight press conference.

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Matt Hughes Re-Signs With UFC

Matt Hughes. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Former UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes has announced that he has signed a new multi-fight contract with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

“Last week I went out to Vegas and I signed a multi-fight deal with the UFC, which is much like my last contract,” Hughes said via his official website. “They still have to find out who, where and when my next fight will be and I will try to post that info ASAP.”

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Video: Verbal Battle Continues Between Hughes, Serra

In the above video, former UFC welterweight champions Matt Hughes and Matt Serra continue their war of words leading up to their anticipated grudge match at this weekend’s UFC 98 event, which will take place Saturday night in Las Vegas.

Serra Wrestling to Keep Hughes Fight Standing

Matt Serra. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

The long-awaited grudge match between Matt Hughes and Matt Serra is finally upon us. In less than three weeks, the two coaches from the sixth season of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality show will finally clash, over a year and a half since they were originally scheduled to.

Earlier in his career, Serra may have been keen on letting a fight against Hughes to the ground for the chance to submit him. After showing off his heavy hands in one of MMA’s biggest upsets to date over Georges St. Pierre two years ago, Serra is now training in wrestling more than ever in order to keep his showdown with a fellow former welterweight champion on the feet:

As a relatively small 170-pounder, Serra, 9-5, has relied on conditioning, jiu-jitsu and an underrated standup game. Against Hughes, he’ll need to stay on his feet, and Longo says that’s exactly what they’ve been working on.

“We’ve been in training camp about two months now. At first, we just worked on conditioning. He feels great, and his back feels great,” Longo said. “That was (originally) a concern. Between that, he’s doing a lot of sparring and a lot of wrestling. He’s doing more wrestling than I’ve ever seen him do.”

It’s hard to believe Serra will be able to prevent Hughes from taking him down no matter how hard he’s working right now. The ability to wrestle doesn’t exactly come overnight. Serra was taken down at will by GSP in their rematch, but St. Pierre has morphed into one of the best wrestlers in the sport. Chris Lytle and Karo Parisyan were both able to take Serra down multiple times in his two professional fights prior to GSP and neither of them are known for their wrestling.

Even against a Hughes that is a shell of his former self, the only way I see Serra winning this fight is if Hughes opts to keep it on the feet as he’ll be able to dictate where the fight goes throughout. Unfortunately for Serra, all signs point to Hughes returning to his old, effective strategy of the past - dishing out some relentless ground-and-pound. It’s a style that Serra hasn’t been too effective against.

Serra Fight May Not Be Hughes’ Last

Matt Hughes. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Months before Matt Hughes even signed to fight arch-rival Matt Serra at UFC 98 in May, the former longtime UFC welterweight champion revealed that he would be taking some time to think about whether or not he wanted to continue fighting in a sport that almost seems to have passed him by.

He might not be able to compete at the level he did in the past, but it seems that Hughes still has the urge to fight regardless from what he told USA Today’s Sergio Non:

“I still feel healthy. I’m 35 years old. Randy Couture’s what? 44, 45 or something? If he can do it, I can do it. This is what I do — I’m a fighter. I still want to fight, I still want to compete.

“I’ve never been that guy chasing titles, chasing awards. To be honest, after I won my first five belts or something, they were underneath my bed, I didn’t even take them out. As far as plaques on the wall, I could care less. I want my hand raised. I’m a competitor.”

The difference between Hughes and Couture is that Hughes has shown that he can’t keep up with the welterweight division’s best while Couture, at least for now, is still one of the top contenders at heavyweight. I’m glad to see that Hughes still wants to fight. Many of his bouts are exciting. However I don’t see him being anything more than a gatekeeper for the remainder of his professional career. He could be fine with that though, we’ll see.

Hughes Says St. Pierre “Felt Greasy”

Matt Hughes. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Jason “Mayhem” Miller stated his feelings earlier this year. Matt Serra and Sean Sherk followed. Now former UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes is the latest fighter to claim that Georges St. Pierre has potentially been greased up in past fights. In a post today on his official website, the future UFC Hall-of-Famer stated that St.Pierre felt a little slippery:

Now, on to what everybody is talking about, the greasing. I’m not the only one who has said that GSP felt greasy during a fight. I know Matt Serra has mentioned it and, even in their first fight, I think BJ said something. I’m not saying GSP did something wrong and I’m not saying that it would have changed any outcomes of any fights; but what I am saying is, for my last two fights against Georges, he felt greasy.

I have a question for Hughes: If GSP really did feel that slippery during your last two fights, why are you waiting to say something about it until now? It’s somewhat helpful that while wading through this Vaseline mess that past opponents of Georges are coming out and stating that they believe he greased. But at the same time, it’s not, because they are making these accusations months and years after these fights took place.

Hopefully a ruling by the commission and a decision by B.J.‘s camp comes relatively soon, because this issue is getting old fast.

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