On the first day of 2013, a true legend of the sport decided it's time to hang up his MMA gloves. After 127 professional fights, Dan "The Beast" Severn
Severn made his professional debut at UFC 4 all the way back in 1994. He was the first fighter to test his amateur wrestling credentials in the Octagon. And as a 1980 Olympic team qualifier, he definitely had the credentials. After defeating his first two opponents in the single night tournament, he met Royce Gracie who'd won the crown at the three previous events. Despite no submission grappling experience, Severn lasted almost 3 times as long as any of Gracie's previous opponents before being locked up in an unfamiliar triangle choke.
He went on to fight some of the era's best talents in Mark Coleman, Oleg Taktarov, and Ken Shamrock. He introduced Forrest Griffin to the sport in the future Light Heavyweight champion's professional debut in 2001. Not bad for a man who didn't start fighting until he was 36 years old.
Although, Severn is retiring from competition, he made it clear he will continue to do his part for the benefit of the sport. He plans to contribute through seminars, play-by-play commentary, an ambassador for the sport, and more. Additionally, he plans to continue his career as a professional wrestler through 2013, but will retire from that after this year as well.