Soa Palelei announces retirement; removed from UFC roster

Perth based Soa Palelei has retired from competitive fighting on a day a number of UFC fighters were removed from the UFC roster.

The 38-year-old heavyweight is coming off a TKO loss to Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva back in August which dropped his record to 23-5 (UFC 4-3).

A veteran of the local MMA scene since 2002, this was Palelei’s second stint in the UFC after a 0-1 start back in 2007. Palelei won three straight on his return to the UFC in 2013. It included a knock-out win over striker Pat Barry in however two losses in his last three bouts seems to have been enough for Palelei to call it quits.

Palelei expects to remain involved in the sport as per his announcement via twitter:

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

The full list of fighters that were removed from the roster:

  • Lewis Gonzalez
  • Ivan Jorge
  • Naoyuki Kotani
  • William Macario
  • Joe Merritt
  • David Michaud
  • Pawel Pawlak
  • Hernani Perpetuo
  • Vagner Rocha
  • Amir Sadollah
  • Leonardo Mafra Texeira
  • Francisco Trevino
  • TJ Waldburger
  • Luke Zachrich
  • Roger Zapata
Started Martial Arts training after watching Mr Miyagi and Daniel-son in Karate Kid back in 1987. By the time MMA arrived many years later, I was hooked. Coverage of local MMA was via scarce posts on forums like the Underground and Sherdog. I embarked on covering the sport in 2002 and since then have written thousands of articles for both print and online media, before branching out and starting Fight News Australia in 2010. Outside the site, I dream of riding in an F1 car.