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Vitor ‘Shaolin’ Ribeiro announces retirement from MMA

One of the better lightweight fighters from the last decade won’t compete anymore in MMA.

Vitor "Shaolin" Ribeiro, 34, announced his retirement in an interview to Tatame, and leaves the sport with a 20-5 record that includes accomplishments like winning the Cage Rage lightweight title and Shooto welterweight championship.

Ribeiro’s last win happened in 2008, when he stopped Katsuhiko Nagata at Dream 8. In his last three appearances, he suffered decision losses to Shinya Aoki, Lyle Beerbohm and Justin Wilcox.

"Yes, I stopped (fighting)," Vitor told Tatame’s Marcelo Barone. "I have so much things to do that I’d have to cancel a lot of commitments only to fight. There’s no reason why people would offer me an interesting fight with so many talents in the market today. It was great as long it lasted, but I don’t see myself fighting MMA again."

Vitor defeated the likes of Eiji Mitsuoka, Eddie Yagin, Joachim Hansen and Jean Silva in his 20 career victories. He’s happy with what he accomplished, but leaves the sport with one regret.

"I wish I had fought at Pride," he said. "At that time we tried so hard to get something there, but Brazilian Top Team and Chute Boxe were so strong. I was well ranked, I couldn’t understand why they never called me."

As he leaves the sport, he elects Joachim Hansen as his biggest win in MMA.

"Hansen defeated Gomi months before and was demolishing everybody," Ribeiro recalls. "He had a good hand and great Jiu-Jitsu. It was a special moment in my career, defeating him and building my history in Japan with that (Shooto) title."

A fourth-degree black belt in Jiu-Jitsu under Andre Pederneiras, "Shaolin" has won three world titles in Jiu-Jitsu and runs a gym in New York.