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Marlon Moraes, a veteran of 37 professional mixed martial arts contests, has announced his retirement from the sport after suffering his seventh-consecutive knockout loss this week. 

Moraes, 35,  initially stepped away from MMA in April 2022 but returned to compete under the PFL banner — but after a lengthy skid, which included a first-round stoppage defeat against Gabriel Alves Braga this week in Atlanta, he has said that now is the time to permanently move away from combat sports.

“I started here with World Series of Fighting, and when I announced my retirement, I was in the UFC,” Moraes said after his loss to Braga on Thursday. “I wasn’t home. Now, I’m home. I wish I had better performances here, but I gave all my heart. I trained hard. I can look myself in the mirror every day and be proud of myself.

“I’ve been kickboxing, MMA, since I was nine. I’m 35 – that’s 26 years, I gave all my life for this. I gave my heart for the sport. Thank you, God. God gave me all I have. I can’t be sad today. I’m happy. I have a beautiful wife, two kids.”

Moraes will be remembered for an 18-fight run between 2011 and 2019 in which he was defeated just once; a split decision in the UFC against Raphael Assuncao — a defeat which he would avenge just two years later. This sequence of performances also included a first-round knockout win against reigning UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling.

However, his performances suffered lately and he was finished by a range of fighters in the UFC and PFL including Rob Font, Cory Sandhagen, Song Yadong, Brendan Loughnane and, on Thursday, Silva.

Moraes last and final win in mixed martial arts was a split decision nod against compatriot Joe Aldo in December 2019.