Thirty-eight-year-old heavyweight knockout artist Soa “The Hulk” Palelei (22-5 MMA, 4-3 UFC) has announced his retirement from mixed martial arts competition. Palelei made the announcement on social media Monday:
“I want to take an opportunity to officially announce my retirement from the sport of Mixed Martial Arts. Thank you to the UFC, Dana White, Lorenzo Fertitta and Joe Silva for giving me a second chance to fight for the organization. I’ve had a great time, but feel it’s time to focus on my family and other career interests. After several months of thought and discussion with my family and my team, we realize our future includes many things in MMA, but active competition in the sport is no longer one of them. This isn’t goodbye, as I will still be very much involved in the sport but just not as a fighter. I want to help further MMA around the world and give my contribution to the sport. I know that I have, and will continue to contribute much to the growth of our sport outside of the Octagon. Stay tuned guys as there is still so much more to come from “The Hulk” #WatchThisSpace #MuchLove”
Palelei made his UFC debut in 2013 riding an eight-fight winning streak — all by knockout. Out of his 22 victories, 18 have been by knockout.
The heavy-handed Australian last fought in August when he dropped a second round TKO to Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva. His wins inside the UFC Octagon include stoppages of Ruan Potts, Pat Barry, Nikita Krylov, and most recently, Walt Harris.