It's been two years since Matt Hughes, UFC Hall of Famer and pioneer in the welterweight division, retired from active MMA competition. Since then, the landscape of the 170-pound weight class has changed drastically, from the long reign of his successor Georges St-Pierre to the now ultra-competitive Top five, where virtually everyone could be a worthy champion.
And while the former two-time welterweight titleholder admits that at 41-years old, he might not be able to fight top-tier competition anymore, his drive to compete is still there, as he revealed in an interview with German outlet Groundandpound.de. According to Hughes, a return to the UFC would only require one little thing:
"For Dana White to say 'come back'. That's all it would take, a phone call from Dana and I would be back! I'm a little old, I'm 41 years old and I'd have to be careful with my opponent, but I'm still a competitor and I'd love to get in there."
Although Hughes wants to choose his opponent for a potential UFC return carefully, he quickly named one right away:
"Matt Serra and I had a good match this last time and we've got our differences. So he's been asking for a rematch forever and I'd give it to him if he wanted to."
Hughes beat Serra via decision six years ago at UFC 98 in what was a Fight of the Night performance. A rematch between both former champion would surely attract an array of viewers, although it might have no relevance for the upper echelons of the welterweight division.
Hughes's good friend and former teammate Robbie Lawler, the current welterweight champion, reigns a division full of potential challengers, such as number-one contender Rory MacDonald, former champion Johny Hendricks or the currently suspended Hector Lombard. A division that seems to have thrived since their longtime kingpin Georges St-Pierre stepped down in 2013. Ever since, rumors of a potential GSP comeback have constantly swirled around. But Hughes, who fought St-Pierre three times, doesn't see that one coming at all.
"Georges last fight, he had a fight against Johny (Hendricks). Many people think the lost that fight. I can't see GSP coming back. The sport has kind of caught up to him a little bit and everybody gets old, as I can say that, and you're just not what you're used to be. Why would Georges come back and face one of these younger guys that are gunning for him? Georges took a lot of punishment in that last fight of his. Why would he come back to take that punishment when he's made probably more money than anybody in the UFC?"
Hughes also gives his opinion on the new anti-drug policy implemented by the UFC, the last Lawler-Hendricks fight, his prediction on Lawler-MacDonald 2, why he compares hunting to fighting and lots of other interesting things. You can watch the video below.
Matt Hughes: 'All it would take is a phone call from Dana and ...
Posted by Groundandpound.de on Donnerstag, 16. April 2015