Former middleweight world champion Sergio "Maravilla" Martinez made official what everyone knew was coming, as the Argentine star announced his retirement from boxing during the Hall of Fame weekend in Canastota, New York.
"It's time to step aside and continue on to new horizons," Martinez said during part of a speech obtained by USA TODAY Sports. "I'm now retired. Thank you very much, hasta la victoria siempre (and to victory always)."
Martinez, 40, was a clearly hobbled man when he last fought in June 2014, losing to Miguel Cotto in a disastrous bout that saw him dropped three times in the opening round and stopped after 10 rounds. His knee and the rest of his body were betraying him dating back a few years, and his body was simply breaking down.
Martinez met with many doctors for their opinions over the last year, but recently said he was planning to make this announcement, and saved it for a special boxing weekend.
HBO's Ken Hershman had this to say through a network release:
"Like millions of boxing fans around the world who have enjoyed watching his spectacular career, everybody at HBO Sports will miss Sergio's professionalism and elite fighting skills.
"What we will do is celebrate a career that is full of accomplishments by one of the most determined athletes of this generation. Watching Sergio win the lineal world middleweight championship on HBO was a landmark moment in the sport's history. More importantly, our respect and admiration for Sergio as an individual is unmeasurable.
"His decision to be an activist and campaign against bullying is just one example of how he has taken his celebrity and used it as a positive force to make the world a better place.
"We will be forever grateful to Sergio and his team for allowing HBO to chronicle his remarkable journey to the top of the sport."
Martinez retires with a career record of 51-3-2 (28 KO), with six successful defenses of the world middleweight championship between 2010 and 2013.