Did Matt Serra retire? 'The Terror' says he's 'walking away' from MMA and UFC following rib surgery

Al Bello

Unless UFC can find a way to host a pay-per-view at Madison Square Garden, fans have likely seen the last of mixed martial arts (MMA) "Terror" Matt Serra.

Don't call it retirement.

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Welterweight Champion Matt Serra, who scored one of the biggest upsets in mixed martial arts (MMA) history by knocking out Georges St. Pierre at UFC 69, is "walking away" from the sport of cage fighting.

"The Terror" breaks it down for Newsday:

"I really think I'm walking away. I'm going to be 39, I just had my rib taken out. I'm having my third kid. My schools are doing well. What am I doing, looking for another pay day? It's not really for that. I mean, it doesn't stink, but it's not really for that. Am I still trying to hold on for the glory? Glory is a drug, dude. I'm telling you, that's the problem. It really is. I know why guys can't walk away. I absolutely get it. An aging fighter? You know, it's like an aging stripper, but not as funny. Not a lot of people want to see that."

Serra was suffering from a condition known as thoracic outlet syndrome and had to have a rib removed to make room for his blood vessels. Currently on blood thinners after doctors found clots in his arm and lung, he's about a month away from resuming his grappling duties at his Long Island jiu-jitsu academy.

The soon-to-be 39 year-old former lightweight was the first American black belt under Renzo Gracie, took first place at the Pan Am Games as a purple belt and won a gold medal at the World Games as a brown belt.

The reigning pastaweight champion hasn't seen the inside of a cage since a unanimous decsiion loss to Chris Lytle way back at UFC 119 in late 2010, a rematch from their Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 4 "Comeback" finale that propelled Serra into his "Rush" title fight.

He certainly made the most of it.

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