Charasmatic UFC heavyweight fighter Pat Barry has announced that he’s taking an “indefinite leave” from mixed martial arts and as such has been released from his contract.

Despite being one of the most popular personalities in the UFC, the former kickboxer struggled to find consistency in the Octagon, having lost three of his last four bouts and holding an overall 5-7 record in the promotion.

In a statement prepared by his manager, Brian Butler, Barry claims it was the wrestling aspect of the sport that he’s looking to break free from.

“With recent changes in the landscape of combat sports, he wants to explore some options and try to get back to his roots,” Butler also stated.

Reading between the lines it seems that rather than hang up his gloves for good, Barry will instead look to return to the sport of kickboxing instead.

Glory are now the biggest kickboxing organization around and have been drawing good numbers over on Spike TV recently, so that would appear to be the most likely destination for the next stage in Barry’s career.

You can read Butler’s full statement below.

“After long discussions with our client Pat Barry over the recent weeks, he has come to the decision that he will be taking an indefinite leave from competing in MMA. The UFC and Zuffa have been very gracious in releasing him from his contract and Pat is very grateful for everything they have done for him and his career.

“Over the past few fights I’ve just had this sinking feeling in my stomach whenever I have stepped into the Octagon and I realize, I DONT WANT TO WRESTLE. Not saying I will never do MMA again, but right now I just want to hit people. MMA and the UFC have been great to me and I will always support the company and the sport. I want to thank all my fans, sponsors and haters for being with me on this journey and I look forward to what future holds.” – HD!

“Pat and I have talked about this for a while now and with recent changes in the landscape of combat sports, he wants to explore some options and try to get back to his roots. He’s going to take a little time to clear his head and then we will explore our options. We will keep you posted on things as they develop.” – Brian Butler”

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