One of the hardest parts of combat sports is knowing when to walk away. Often the dangerous whispers of victory, or the murmurs of fame and monetary gain, plague a fighter’s mind—convincing them to take just one more fight. There is always a skeptical moment among combat sports fans when we hear a fighter is going to retire. But, for UFC and Bellator veteran Gerald Harris it was his last fight that cemented his retirement.
The 40-year old was in action at C3 Fights 48 in Oklahoma, against fellow UFC alumni Seth Baczynski. A fitting and victorious end for the hometown hero who has fought over half his fights as a professional MMA fighter in the state of Oklahoma. However, despite winning, there was one particular moment in the fight that caused ‘Hurricane’ to answer the curtain call on his career.
“I’m not kidding, no joke, as soon as he punched me in the face the last time, I was like ‘Yeah, this sh*t ain’t for me no more,’” Harris explained to MMA Fighting.
For a veteran of over thirty fights, Harris who celebrated his 40th birthday, four days before his last fight felt the impact of the years taking a toll on him.
“I’m getting older, I’m getting slower and I realized in that moment that I did not want to be in there anymore. I got my win. I couldn’t end my career on a loss or a win over someone who wasn’t qualified to be in there against me. I felt good beating Baczynski. He’s a quality opponent. I made that decision in the third round.”
Harris is no stranger to retirement, having previously retired back in 2014, following a short stint with the World Series of Fighting. ‘Hurricane’ returned to competition in 2016, however, and found his way to Bellator in 2018—where he debuted with a loss to current middleweight champion, Rafael Lovato Jr. Defeats to Yaroslav Amosov and Anatoly Tokov followed, as well as a draw to Hracho Darpinyan. But it seems for Harris, who has been beleaguered with injuries, even a victory against the Polish Pistola won’t be enough to entice him back to the fight game.
My nose was severely broken 4-weeks before this last fight, then broken again in the fight . I am happily walking away from this sport after 3 broken hands, torn achilles, 3 torn MCLs, torn cornea, cracked sternum, 2 pulled hamstrings, multiple ligament tears, & 2 broken noses pic.twitter.com/Xa9oPTAZAH— Gerald Harris (@GHurricane) November 26, 2019
While this is likely the end of a great career for Harris, he will mostly be remembered for boasting four-slam KO victories on his record—if you haven’t seen any of them before check out the video below (viewer discretion is strongly advised).
Thank you for the highlights Gerald.