Storybook endings to careers are few and far between, but former middleweight contender Mark Munoz – who lost four out of five of his fights since 2012 – managed to put a serious beating on opponent Luke Barnatt at UFC Fight Night: Manila today, earning a clear-cut unanimous decision in a bout that would mark the end of an MMA career spanning almost eight years.
The win was, of course, not a given going into the bout. Though one time considered to be one of the upper-level competitors among the 185-pounders, Munoz couldn’t seem to put things together in the cage anymore. After getting clobbered by Chris Weidman, the Filipino dropped losses to the likes of Lyoto Machida, Gegard Mousasi and Roan Carneiro. Granted, three out of four of those guys are elite fighters, but Munoz wasn’t even competitive in those bouts.
But Munoz made his retirement intentions very clear going into this bout with Barnatt, and perhaps that somehow invigorated him, because he pretty much beat the Brit from pillar to post for all three rounds.
After the decision was made official, Munoz thanked the fans, and then laid his gloves down on the canvas. It doesn’t happen often, but this particular fighter got to go out in style.