Gray "The Bully" Maynard (8-1-1) vs Clay "The Carpenter" Guida (9-6) Maynard is coming off of an October 2011 loss to Edgar, after an 8-0-1 start to his UFC career. This is not exactly a small layoff, and his next opponent isn't exactly a walk-through.
Clay Guida is a true veteran of the UFC. 15 fights, 4-1 in his last 5 and only lost to Benson Henderson, last November, who went on to become champion at the beginning of the year.
On paper, this fight looks to be a great one. Both have good wrestling and striking. However, it's this analyst's opinion that this may be somewhat lackluster. Both fighters are vying for a title shot and this fight has title contender implications. With the stakes this high, and both of them losing their previous fight, they both need a win here. Caution may very well take control of this fight as it has in the past with fights like this, rendering both fighters tentative and hesitant.
The fight is over. The final horn has sounded we've watched all the replays, and we've listened to Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg give their take on the fight. The fighters stand to either side of the referee, while Bruce Buffer, the UFC octagon announcer, gathers the judges' scorecards and prepares to read the official decision. But everyone knows who won. Anyone with a working set of eyes could see that one fighter clearly outperformed the other. The decision should be nothing more than a formality. And yet this moment is one of the most tense moments in the Mixed Martial Arts. Because all too often, it seems the wrong guy wins.
When I was much younger, I once wore my original Adidas shorts, put mom's hair band on my wrist, tied a towel around my neck as a cape and jumped from the dressing table in the bedroom onto my parent's bed. The fact that the Adidas shorts were 'original' is important, as are the towel-cape and the dressing table. Bear that in mind. I was into the whole WWF scene at the time. I still am, just that WWF is now WWE.
I never really believed anything that happened in the WWE ring was 'real'. Not in a lets-pause-the-video-and-look-for-fake-blood way but in a no-way-he-survived-the-Batista-Bomb, unfeigned manner. So what?
Then Brock Lesnar superduperflexed the Big Show, breaking the ring and changed everything.
There is currently an aura around the Heavyweight Division in Mixed Martial Arts. The division is generally populated with poorer athletes than other divisions, and the fights tend to involve less skill, yet still there's a certain sense of wonder that's associated with it. While other divisions keep the playing field fair by dividing fighters by size, and we can argue endlessly about the best pound-for-pound fighter, the Heavyweight Division takes a bit of the sporting element away from Mixed Martial Arts and exists to answer one question: Who is the most dangerous unarmed man on the planet? Right now, it's Junior Dos Santos.
Jon Jones faced his stiffest competition yet in Rashad Evans at UFC 145, and walked away with another dominant victory. It was a night designed to showcase some of the UFC's best young talent, and elsewhere on the card, several prospects shined, others couldn't live up to the hype, and some established veterans were upset and will have to go back to the drawing board.
A look at the main card fights:
Jon Jones defeated Rashad Evans via Unanimous Decision
Jones improved to 16-1 in what's becoming a historic MMA career Saturday night by thoroughly outclassing his former teammate and friend, Evans (17-2-1). Jones exploited a nearly ten inch reach advantage throughout the five rounds, landing successfully from the outside with selective straight punches. Whenever Evans managed to close the distance, or when Jones chose to close it himself, he landed vicious elbows that proved to be the most significant shots in the fight.