Matt Serra is the latest inductee into the UFC Hall of Fame.
On Saturday’s UFC Atlantic City broadcast, it was announced that “The Terror” will enter the Pioneer Wing of the promotion’s Hall of Fame with the class of 2018 and will be honored on July 5 in Las Vegas during International Fight Week.
Serra, 43, along with trainer and longtime friend Ray Longo, are responsible for working with some of the UFC’s best New York-based fighters, such as former UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman and recent lightweight title challenger Al Iaquinta. However, prior to focusing on coaching, Serra carved out a path of his own inside the Octagon.
A decorated Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner under Renzo Gracie, Serra made his professional MMA debut in April 1999 before joining the UFC where he battled the likes of B.J. Penn, Din Thomas, and Yves Edwards. His career stalled early, but he rose to fame as one of the most prominent cast members of The Ultimate Fighter 4, a season dedicated to fighters who had previously competed in the UFC and were looking for a second chance.
Serra won that season’s welterweight tournament, which earned him a shot against world champion Georges St-Pierre at UFC 69 on April 7, 2007. In one of the sport’s all-time great upsets, Serra defeated the heavily-favored St-Pierre by first-round TKO.
Though the rematch would go St-Pierre’s way and Serra would go on to retire in 2010 with a modest 11-7 record, his battles with the elite of the sport and his shocking title win cemented him as one of MMA’s most enduring and entertaining personalities.
“It’s super special, it really is quite the honor,” Serra said on Saturday’s FOX Sports 1 broadcast. “I’ve always bragged that I fought some guys in the Hall of Fame, legends like B.J. Penn and Matt Hughes and they always knew they were in a fight, but now I’m in there, so I can’t even use that line.
“I’m in good company. It’s just such an honor, and I exceeded all my goals now.”
Serra added that he expects Longo to handle his induction. He is the second name announced for the 2018 UFC Hall of Fame class, joining the late Bruce Connal, the UFC’s longtime television producer, who will be added to the contributor wing.