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Al Iaquinta says he’s retired from MMA

Al Iaquinta, right, and Kevin Lee exchange blows during the first round of a UFC 169 lightweight mixed martial arts bout in Newark, N.J., Saturday, Feb. 1, 2014. Iaquinta won by unanimous decision. (AP Photo/Tim Larsen)
(AP Photo/Tim Larsen)

We may have already seen Al Iaquinta compete inside the Octagon for the last time.

The No. 13-ranked lightweight fighter last stepped into the cage at UFC Fight Night 63 last April, but has since been sidelined due to injury and a public contract dispute with the UFC.

Displeased with the amount of money he’d be making in the aftermath of the UFC’s deal with Reebok, Iaquinta says he’s retired.

The New York native was briefly eyed for a slot on the UFC 205 card at Madison Square Garden, but was since pulled after he decided he wouldn’t fight given his contract situation.

“There’s a lot things that have changed since I signed the contract, and for me to go in there and risk my health, risk everything that you risk when you go into a cage fight, I just said, ‘look, I can’t do it,’” Iaquinta said on The MMA Hour (transcription via MMA Fighting). “‘We’ve got to ask for more money. Maybe we can negotiate something.’ My manager told me there’s probably not a good chance of that happening, so I said, ‘you know what, I can’t do it. Financially, I can’t fight for this purse.’

“If I win the fight and they take taxes out and I pay my trainers, I make okay money. Okay. For fighting in a cage, I don’t know about it. God forbid, I don’t win the fight, (after) taxes, trainers, all the expenses, everything that goes into a training camp, I’m basically fighting at Madison Square Garden for free. It’s just unreasonable. So I asked him to reach out to the UFC, and from what he tells me there was no consideration of a negotiation whatsoever.”

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