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Ricardo Lamas knows he is nearing the end of the line in his mixed martial arts career.
The 38-year-old Chicago native used a strong third round to pull away from game short-notice foe Bill Algeo at UFC Fight Night 175, earning a unanimous decision triumph in a featured featherweight bout at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas on Saturday night. “The Bully” set career highs for significant strikes landed (104) and takedowns (five) in the victory.
Lamas wasn’t ready to formally concede that it was his final walk to the Octagon, but if it ends up being a farewell, he’s happy to go out on a high note.
“I walked into this thinking it could maybe be my last fight,” Lamas said after the bout. “I didn’t want to walk away with a loss. I always said I don't want to leave this sport in the dirt. I want to leave with my head held high. That's a fight I can be proud of.”
Lamas plans on talking with his family before he makes any concrete plans regarding his fighting future.
“I’m not ready to clarify on [possibly retiring] yet,” he said. “It’s a decision I want to make with my family. With the way that I train, I travel a lot. I spend time away from my kids and wife. I just don’t know if I can do that anymore. I’m going to talk with them and we’ll make a decision together.”
Lamas’ triumph over Algeo gave him 11 UFC triumphs in 17 promotional appearances, tying him for the third most wins in the history of the division. It’s a run that included a loss to Jose Aldo in a title fight in 2014 along with victories over the likes of Cub Swanson, Hatsu Hioki, Dennis Bermudez, Diego Sanchez, Charles Oliveira and Darren Elkins.
“I grew up in the WEC and UFC with Zuffa. I’ve been with them for 11 years now. I signed with them in 2009. It’s been a hell of a ride,” Lamas said. “From day one, they threw me in with the sharks. I had to learn to sink or swim. It’s been awesome. I appreciate all the opportunities given to me from the UFC, Dana White and Sean Shelby. I love you guys. Thank you very much.”