Lightweight Rich Clementi has decided to walk away from Mixed Martial Arts at the age of 36 after suffering a submission loss in his most recent rumble, tapping to Marcin Held’s Toe Hold this past Friday night at Bellator 81. The defeat ended a three-fight run in the ring for Clementi, and as a result, his MMA career as well.
“I guess this day had to come some time. Just wish it could have been on my terms but then again we all know that wouldn’t have happened because I would have always wanted just one more time under those lights,” wrote Clementi on Facebook of the decision to hang up his gloves. “I am so grateful for the things this sport has taught mel the friends, experiences and most of all learning who I am. I am so lucky I have a platform to share these experiences and help others try to reach their dreams. I want to thank everyone that has helped me in this experience.”
“Now it’s time to turn the page. That’s life and now the same drive will be passed off towards my guys and now I will be able to give more of me to them. I am very excited to see what the future has in store for me,” concluded Clementi, referring to his intent to spend more time teaching students at his gym in Louisiana.
A UFC veteran and Ultimate Fighter alumnus, Clementi racked up an overall record of 45-22-1 including 36 wins featuring some form of finish. “No Love” also took out a number of notable opponents during his time in the sport such as Melvin Guillard, Sam Stout, and Anthony Johnson.
PHOTO CREDIT – FEG/UFC