It was a rough night for Seth Petruzelli at Bellator 96 on Wednesday night. "The Silverback" was a huge underdog against Muhammed Lawal in the light heavyweight tournament semifinals, and predictably he was knocked out by King Mo in the first round. That marked Seth's 2nd knockout loss this year and with a record of 14-8 he's calling it quits. Petruzelli posted this statement on his Facebook page earlier this morning:
I want to thank my family, friends, fiancé and fans for being by my side these past 13 years plus of my MMA career. Every time I fought it was to please and excite you but most of all make you proud of me. Up until a couple years ago it pleased and excited me as well. That is where I went wrong, for the past couple years I have been fighting for the wrong reasons, I don’t have the desire or drive to fight like I used to and the past couple fights have shown it. So at this point in my life I would like to officially announce my retirement from the sport of MMA. Competing has been a part of my life since I was 6 years old, now I would like to put more of an effort into seeing my students/fighters do the same and making my gym grow and flourish. MMA has taken me around the world, let me meet the best and worst of people and made me feel like the brightest star but also like a black hole at times. ..and I have no regrets because I did it all my way.
Petruzelli made his way onto the national scene as a semifinalist on season 2 of The Ultimate Fighter, where he lost to eventual runner-up Brad Imes. After going 0-2 against "Jon Jones killer" Matt Hamill and "Jon Fitch killer" Wilson Gouveia, he soon found himself out of the UFC. His career highlight came in EliteXC, when he replaced Ken Shamrock in the main event versus Kimbo Slice, knocking the internet sensation out in 14 seconds. CBS announcer Gus Johnson called it "the greatest upset in the history of MMA", which gives you an idea of how the Gus Johnson experiment worked out.
Seth was dubbed the "Kimbo Killer" and after two more wins he made his return to the UFC in 2010. Unfortunately, he failed to pick up his first win in the promotion, losing to Ricardo Romero and Karlos Vemola before being axed again. He closed out his career with wins over Dave Mewborn and Ricco Rodriguez and the Bellator tournament losses to Jacob Noe and King Mo. In 22 career fights, Petruzelli went the distance only twice (vs. Dan Severn and Hamill).
With Petruzelli announcing his retirement today and Babalu hanging up his gloves on Wednesday, that means that literally half of Bellator's 205 lbs Summer Series tournament participants are no longer active in the sport.