Paul Felder officially confirmed his retirement from the sport last night while providing color commentary for UFC Fight Night 188.
“It’s been, really since February since I fought Dan Hooker in New Zealand,” Felder said during the broadcast. “I got the fire back a little bit when I fought RDA on five days’ notice. I thought it was back and ever since then I’ve spent most of my days swimming, biking, enjoying commentary, and enjoying my time with my family.
“I feel like it’s gotten to a point where I don’t have that burning desire to fight up for many more years and become the champion. I always said if I don’t see that title picture in the next year or so in my future then I’d retire, and I’d do it for my friends and family and myself. I’m 37 years old. I feel very fresh. I love the UFC with all my heart for everything that they’ve given me, for every opportunity I ever had and sitting here on this desk and doing television. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do, and I’m going to keep doing this.
“I’m retiring officially from the sport of mixed martial arts and the UFC. I got as high as No. 6 in the world and got pretty close to fight for that belt. I fought some of the baddest dudes in this division, and I want to thank all of them. My apologies for holding up the division for all the guys below me and the young guns. I’m officially stepping down because it’s not right to hold up the division. I wish more people would do this. When it’s time, it’s time, and that’s it for me.”
Felder bows out with a 9-6 run in the UFC that included wins over the likes of current champion Charles Oliveira, Edson Barboza and James Vick, in addition to an an overall career record that extends to 17-6.