Saturday, March 8, 2014

Northeast MMA Vet Jay Hieron Retires


Jay Hieron announced his retirement from MMA competition yesterday, and the move caps off a pretty amazing career that began right here in the Northeast nearly ten years ago.
Hieron, a.k.a. "The Thoroughbred", made four appearances in the Octagon, and though he never managed to get a "W" there, he did fight against the likes of Georges St. Pierre, Jake Ellenberger and Tyron Woodley. He also was a regular in the IFL, and fought in Bellator, Strikeforce and the WEC.

His debut came at Reality Fighting 4 on July 19, 2003, which was held in the gymnasium of Marist High School in Bayonne, N.J. Back then, Long Islanders interested in MMA competition had much more limited training options compared to today, and as a general rule, if you were going to be successful, you were either a Matt Serra student or part of the Hofstra wrestling clique. Given his friendship with Phil Baroni, Hieron was of the latter. As such, he completely steamrolled over his opponent at Reality Fighting and won handily at ROCs in the following months.

His first real test came when he traveled to Massachusetts and fought for the fledgling promotion Eruption. There, Hieron went the distance with jiu-jitsu specialist Fabio Holanda and took the decision (it wasn't that close). Soon after, he moved out to Las Vegas, and the rest is history.

Hieron retires with a 20-7 record. Since he trained many fighters over the years at Xtreme Couture, it's safe to assume that he has a second career ahead of him and won't be stuck waiting tables at Denny's trying to eke out a living.

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