Photo of Matt Hamill by Esther Lin via MMAFighting.com.
What, you thought a mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter would retire and actually stick to his word?
That isn't the case with Matt Hamill, at least, who called it quits following a crushing loss to Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 133, his second in a row after a five-fight win streak had him close to the top of the division. That sounds silly now but believe me, it wasn't then.
On Aug. 8, 2011, Hamill released a statement on his website that he was "hanging up my gloves and retiring from this amazing sport." He blamed injuries and a lack of motivation, citing the need to give his ravaged body a rest after so many years competing in combat sports.
Now, Cagewriter.com brings word that "The Hammer" has a fire in his belly and the only way to put it out is to get back inside the cage. So that's what he's doing, agreeing to a fight against Octagon debutant Roger Hollet at UFC 152 on Sept. 22, 2012, in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Duff Holmes, Hamill's manager, explained why he's coming back:
"We talked about what happened. That fame that comes from being a UFC fighter, that's addictive, like a drug. When he retired, the big checks weren't rolling in. He wasn't on a pedestal. It's funny. There's really no difference in him. He was a UFC fighter and now he's a former UFC fighter, but people reacted to him differently. He wasn't being treated like a superstar and I think he missed that and wanted it back."
Holmes would go on to assure everyone that Hamill isn't just back for a one-off to satisfy his need for competition. No, he's back for good and "committed to making a run at the title once again."
UFC officials apparently wanted Hamill to drop down to middleweight for his return but he immediately vetoed the idea and will welcome Hollet to the world's largest fight promotion.
Hollet is a Canadian who has spent the majority of his career on the regional circuit up north. He's currently riding a five-fight win streak with his last victory coming by way of split decision over John Hawk at Bellator 57.
UFC 152 will feature a the conclusion of the mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion's mini flyweight tournament to crown its first-ever 125-pound champion when Joseph Benavidez collides with Demetrious Johnson in the main event of the evening.
In middleweight pay-per-view (PPV) main card action, Brian Stann will look to silence Michael Bisping and his calls for a division title shot, while homegrown talent Rory MacDonald will attempt to use B.J. Penn as a stepping stone to his ascent to the top of the 170-pound contender class.