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Matt Hughes issues statement in wake of domestic violence allegations

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

One day after news surfaced that orders of protection were secured against UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes by his wife and brother in Illinois, the former welterweight champion responded with an emotional statement over Instagram.

Hughes was ordered to stay at least 500 feet from his wife, Audra, and their children, after several alleged violent incidents, most recently one on Dec. 12 of last year in which he was accused of striking his wife in the presence of his children. Hughes’ brother, Mark, had a restraining order filed after a Sept. 23 incident in which Matt Hughes allegedly got into a physical altercation with Mark Hughes’ 15-year-old son.

In the Instagram post, a distraught-sounding Hughes detailed the challenges he’s faced since suffering a horrific brain injury when his pickup truck was hit by an oncoming train in 2017, and said he doesn’t blame those close to him for wanting him out of their lives.

“Since my train accident in June of 2017, my life has been changed forever. Some days have been absolute hell. The challenges and battles that I have faced have been far greater than anything I ever took on in a cage. I am not the same person since my accident, even though, everyday I continue to try to be as normal as someone with a brain injury can be.

“I understand that it is not fun to teach a grown man to learn to do everything all over again. I understand that I am a burden to those around me. I understand that I am an inconvenience to my family. Unfortunately, my marriage was not perfect long before the accident but NEVER, NEVER, NEVER would I, or have I, physically hurt those who I care about most.”

You can see Hughes’ entire post below:

View this post on Instagram

Since my train accident in June of 2017, my life has been changed forever. Some days have been absolute hell. The challenges and battles that I have faced have been far greater than anything I ever took on in a cage. I am not the same person since my accident, even though, everyday I continue to try to be as normal as someone with a brain injury can be. I understand that it is not fun to teach a grown man to learn to do everything all over again. I understand that I am a burden to those around me. I understand that I am an inconvenience to my family. Unfortunately, my marriage was not perfect long before the accident, but NEVER, NEVER, NEVER would I, or have I, physically hurt those who I care about most. I do not resent those who are trying to hurt me and paint me out to be a monster through these false accusations. I understand now that they are just doing what they need to do in order to rid me of their lives forever so theirs can return to normalcy. I feel awful that my accident turned their world upside-down also. To those of you who have helped me, supported me, cared for me, and prayed for me- I truly cannot thank you enough. To my supporters who defended me and never believed these untrue, disgraceful reports for a second- thank you. If there is one silver lining that this accident has revealed, it is the ability to see who my true friends are. To know who are faithful and have never given up on me even when I am at my lowest. Thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I do not know where I would be without you. Please keep the prayers coming. God knows I need them.

A post shared by Matt Hughes (@matthughes9x) on