While Martin Kampmann hasn’t competed in a mixed martial arts bout since August 2013, he didn’t announced his retirement during the past couple years, either.
On Tuesday, “The Hitman” made it official, calling it quits at age 33 after a 27-fight career that began in 2003.
“I’ve known for a while,” Kampmann told UFC.com. “I just haven’t really made it official. I’m not sure why.”
Kampmann’s desire to fight was surpassed by his desire to spend time with his wife, two sons and recently-born daughter in Denmark. His last Octagon appearance came at UFC Fight Night in Indianapolis on Aug. 28, 2013, when he suffered a fourth-round technical knockout loss to Carlos Condit in the evening’s headliner. Shortly thereafter, he took a coaching position at Team Alpha Male in Sacramento, Calif.
The longtime Xtreme Couture fighter won’t be too far removed from the sport, but his overall focus will be decidedly less intense.
“I’m sure I’ll still be involved in MMA,” he said. “It will probably be more from a hobby perspective, whereas before, I was doing full-time fighting and full-time coaching. But I still have gyms that I work with and that I help. I coach, I do seminars, and I work a lot with my affiliate gyms and make sure that they’re getting better in their MMA development. So, I’ll be involved in MMA, but now I’m really busy with other things.”
While Kampmann never challenged for a title in the UFC, he did garner notable triumphs over the likes of Thales Leites, Condit, Paulo Thiago, Rick Story, Thiago Alves and Jake Ellenberger. He also had a pair of close calls in defeat against Jake Shields and Diego Sanchez. The Dane ends his career with a 20-7 record, including a 11-6 mark within the Las Vegas-based promotion.
“I had ups and downs, had some great wins and also had some tough losses, but that’s the name of the game,” Kampmann said. “It’s a volatile game. You can have big up swings and also tough losses. But every fight, I always came to fight and I tried to finish the fights. I’ve never been one of the guys that just tried to squeak out a boring win. I went in there to fight. Sometimes that can bite you in the ass too, if you come in with a good game plan but then take a punch and you get too emotional and you want to fight. But I definitely had that desire inside to put on a fight, and I think that showed in my fights.”