Sam Stout quietly announced his retirement yesterday on UFC Tonight.
How quiet? Well, the Ontario, Canada native didn’t even appear on the Fox Sports 1 TV program at all.
Instead, a statement was read from Stout, who went by “Hands of Stone” in his twelve year MMA career:
“It has become clear to me that I am no longer able to compete at the highest level of mixed martial arts. Competing as a UFC fighter for the last 10 years has been something I will always look back on with great pride. I think my best days as a fighter are behind me and it would be a risk to my legacy and my health to continue competing. Therefore, I would like to announce my retirement from the sport of mixed martial arts.”
Unlike Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira, who coincidentally retired from MMA the day prior, Stout never quite rose to the status of contender in the UFC. But he was among the lightweight division’s best strikers for years, and was known for his memorable back-and-forth battles — including wins against the likes of Spencer Fisher and Joe Lauzon.
Among his twenty UFC appearances were seven post-fight bonuses, including a lightweight division record six bouts named “Fight of the Night.” At one point, he received “Fight of the Night” honors for a staggering three consecutive bouts. He will likely be best remembered as a pioneer of the sport in Canada.
Stout also won a lightweight title in Canada’s TKO organization — a title he defended four times.
“That means a lot to me that I was one of the Canadian trailblazers, fighting in those early UFCs, and it’s a real big honor for me to represent Canadian MMA for as long as I did,” Stout said to Thomas Gerbasi of UFC.com. “I’m really proud of that accomplishment and I take a lot of national pride in my career.”