Paul Daley

Image Credit: Bellator

Paul Daley says next fight at Bellator London will be his retirement fight

After competing professionally since 2003, MMA veteran Paul “Semtex” Daley will be calling it an end to his career this Spring. Making an appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani on Monday, Daley announced that his next fight on May 13, will be his retirement fight.

Although he currently doesn’t have an opponent set for the Bellator London card on May 13, Paul Daley seems ready to walk away following that fight. Most recently, Daley suffered a unanimous decision loss to Jason Jackson back at Bellator 260 in June of 2021. Speaking to Helwani, the welterweight veteran explained his decision to retire.

“Yeah, May 13 will be my last one, it’ll be my retirement fight. After many years in the game, the hours on the road, hours in the gym, years have caught up in me and now every morning I wake up with a bad back, and I’m just tired.”

Looking back at his long long and illustrious career, Daley would continue on to say that he feels he’s now in a position to retire from the sport, letting it be known that he doesn’t want to fight past his time.

“I’ve put in a lot of time in the sport, I’m in a position to retire, fortunately, so, yeah, I’m going to retire. I don’t want to be one of those fighters who is getting knocked out all the time by the younger guys, I want to be the guy who goes out, when I want to go out.”

Having been in some incredible fights and wars throughout his career, Paul Daley would explain that the amount of punishment his body has taken over the years has led to his decision to retire.

“The body’s f**ked, bro. My back. I’ve started waking up with a bad back and I got to get my weight down for this fight and I’m on my runs, and I’m falling asleep watching Netflix films but it’s only 3 o’clock in the afternoon. It’s catching up with me, I never thought it’d be like that but it’s definitely time to stop fighting or trying to compete at the level that I am. There’s more hungry fighters than I am, I’m not hungry. I can still fight but I’m not hungry. I’m not interested in all the gimmicky stuff on Instagram and that s**t, that’s not me so I’m going to leave it to the young ones and step back.”

Fighting out of Nottingham, England, Paul Daley has been a staple in the sport throughout his career, as well as fighters out of the UK. Choosing to retire at his own time, on a fight card scheduled to take place in his backyard, Daley is going out on his own terms, which is something not all fighters get to do.

Even if his body breaking down is part of the reason why he’s walking away, it appears “Semtex” is at peace with making the decision at this stage of his career. The Bellator London card will see Michael “Venom” Page, a former rival of Daley’s, compete for the welterweight title against champion Yaroslav Amosav.

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