Gray Maynard: Becoming the UFC Lightweight Champion proves you are the best in the World

Prior to last year’s UFC 112 in Abu Dhabi, long time Lightweight king-pin B.J. Penn ruled over the division with an iron-fist, leaving little question (for many) as to who the best 155-pound fighter in the world was.  This all changed, however, when current Champion Frankie Edgar dethroned the veteran, scoring back to back unanimous decision victories over Penn, sparking a debate over who should now fill that number one spot.

According to top contender Gray Maynard, however, the answer is simple:

“I think Gilbert is a tough kid and he’s a good fighter. Eddie Alvarez is good too but they aren’t consistently going up against top competition. To be the in the top spot you have to beat the other top fighters. If you look at our top lightweights we are all fighting each other and to get to the top of our division you have to go up against guys like Edgar, Penn, Florian and Jim Miller. There are a bunch of different guys in the UFC lightweight division and it’s just stacked. There are no easy fights at 155 pounds and I think to become champion of that division will prove you are the best in the world. – For complete interview visit BloodyElbow.com

Maynard will get another shot to prove himself when he meets Lightweight Champion Frankie Edgar for the third time at UFC 130.  “The Bully” currently stands as the only fighter to claim a victory over Edgar, who he defeated via unanimous decision in 2008.  Their second meeting, this past January at UFC 125, ended in a draw after Edgar was able to battle back from an early thrashing that nearly resulted in a first round stoppage.  Though Edgar retained the title, UFC President Dana White announced later that night that he felt an instant rematch was in order.

Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard III will headline UFC 130 on May 28th from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Photo: Sam Morris | Las Vegas Sun


30 Comments

  1. Profile photo of aliseo223

    aliseo223

    February 19, 2011 at 5:37 am

    edgar is going to win this fight, he fought back and won the second fight while he wasn’t there mentally he was out on his feet for the whole fight. His progression as a mixed martial artist is far more then maynards. he just received his brown belt two weeks ago. maynard has heavy hands and as you saw last fight frankies wrestling has improved he is an assistant coach to Rutgers wrestling team. Edgar is going to take it to Maynard. this is going to be a great fight cant wait edgar all day! heavy lies the crown.

  2. Profile photo of TmarlonX

    TmarlonX

    February 19, 2011 at 6:17 am

    I think Maynard has a good point, the UFC probably has the best LW roster in the world. The pool only got deeper with the added WEC guys, but Gilbert and Eddie are two of the best. If you look @ Gilbert alone, he has great striking skills and always is ready to brawl and finish. Eddie is huge for 155, and could definitely KO any UFC light weight anyt given night.
    I trule believe Gilbert will come over to the UFC if he doesnt get a good contract. Nick was about to come over, but Coker finally started paying him. Eddie should come over to the UFC.

  3. Profile photo of DeadlyIntentions93

    DeadlyIntentions93

    February 19, 2011 at 6:48 am

    Being a champion in any weight class in the UFC immediately grants rank #1.

    But in reality it really isn’t the case.

  4. Profile photo of Stevorilla

    Stevorilla

    February 19, 2011 at 8:18 am

    Edgar; lay and pray is gay and dance like a fancy pants. He can out point everybody, but that ain’t fighting.

  5. Profile photo of japanegro23

    japanegro23

    February 19, 2011 at 8:39 am

    I think he is absolutely right. When you look at all the fighters regardless of promotions, the LW is the deepest division across the board. I can’t wait to see Edgar Maynard 3. After watching the last fight you know the next will be awesome. I expect Frankie to do what he did in the last fight minus the gettting rocked part haha.

  6. Profile photo of Nemesis

    Nemesis

    February 19, 2011 at 9:16 am

    Example?

  7. Profile photo of mmauk

    mmauk

    February 19, 2011 at 10:24 am

    I think Maynrd is gonna win, people over the look the fact that Maynard gassed himslef out in the first round, then reserved his energy in the second then paced himself for the last three rounds. If you hadn’t seen the first round you would have thought Maynard was the guy that got pasted in the first Edgar lookes much fresher. Also look at the takedown attempts from Gregg, yes Egar defened well but he usually sets up his takedowns better and closes the distance alot quicker too. Maynard by decision for me.

  8. Profile photo of HugeCleavage

    HugeCleavage

    February 19, 2011 at 11:37 am

    maynard is going to win! and this time he will finnish edgar.

  9. Profile photo of THF

    THF

    February 19, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    Lesnar wasn’t really the #1 Heavyweight in the world when he was champion… Even though I think Cain and the others UFC champs ARE the best in the world and in their weight classes.

    You can make an argument about Cain not being #1 I would understand (but again I think he would beat everybody at 265) , but for the others division… Come on : Shogun, Silva, GSP, Edgar, Aldo, Cruz.

  10. Profile photo of DeadlyIntentions93

    DeadlyIntentions93

    February 19, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    Its also the same for the title contender in the UFC being the #2 ranked fighter.

  11. Profile photo of Bruce Lee

    Bruce Lee

    February 19, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Dana is treating Frankie like he thinks he doesn’t actually deserve to be champ. He’s like “Oh, you beat BJ….Best two out of three. Oh Maynard couldn’t take the title. I’ll let him try again.”

    Frankie is the champ. Lets move on.

  12. Profile photo of ahhhhhhhhhhhh

    ahhhhhhhhhhhh

    February 19, 2011 at 6:20 pm

    next it’ll be edgar-pettis1 followed by edgar-pettis2

  13. Profile photo of kinosis79

    kinosis79

    February 19, 2011 at 6:47 pm

    At lightweight and Heavyweight, it doesn’t mean you are the best since the best competition is outside the ufc. Being in the ufc doesn’t make you have magic powers or anything, in most cases it just means you will fight really boring just trying to outpoint your opponent.

  14. Profile photo of SHAKEZULA

    SHAKEZULA

    February 19, 2011 at 10:04 pm

    If Gray does improve his game plan then theres no way he dosnt win that fight. He bout took the last fight and he had some major flaws. WAR GRAY!!

  15. Profile photo of Nemesis

    Nemesis

    February 19, 2011 at 10:16 pm

    Yea how did i know someone would bring up the HW division. *rolls eyes*

  16. Profile photo of maddogscott

    maddogscott

    February 19, 2011 at 10:54 pm

    im goin maynard, but frankie could be a legend at 145

  17. Profile photo of Valkyr

    Valkyr

    February 19, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    Best in the Western Hemisphere…

  18. Profile photo of azzkika

    azzkika

    February 19, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    Well why ask for an example stupid!!

  19. Profile photo of azzkika

    azzkika

    February 19, 2011 at 11:38 pm

    Edgar is one of the best p4p. If you are too dumb to appreciate it so be it, you aint a real fan.

  20. Profile photo of azzkika

    azzkika

    February 19, 2011 at 11:41 pm

    I have to go with Edgar this time. Maynard could very well finish Edgar, we all know his power but Edgar has got some of the slickest footwork in MMA and probably the best cardio too. If I were Maynard I would lose a little weight in order to be a little faster as that is Edgars strength. Whoever wins we are all privileged to witness quality fighters such as these squaring off against each other. Pure class.

  21. Profile photo of GoldenBibi

    GoldenBibi

    February 20, 2011 at 1:39 am

    Edgar will win…. Beside Pettis will whoop them both sooner or later….

  22. Profile photo of falcon4917

    falcon4917

    February 20, 2011 at 2:20 am

    I think pettis will win if they fight. I am not swayed by the kick either Just his all around performance.

  23. Profile photo of falcon4917

    falcon4917

    February 20, 2011 at 2:22 am

    i think so too. I think Ben henderson will beat them too.

  24. Profile photo of xdecemberguy

    xdecemberguy

    February 20, 2011 at 5:26 am

    Gray will win. Last fight I thought Edgar was going to die on his feet. Grays stronger and will walk through Edgar this time. 1st round KO.

  25. Profile photo of Bodhidharma

    Bodhidharma

    February 20, 2011 at 8:24 am

    Winning a UFC belt doesn’t automatically make you the best in the world. It’s completely dominating your weight division, like Anderson Silva, and GSP, or like Matt Hughes in his prime. I.m.o. the belts don’t matter much, it’s how dominant of a fighter you are, and of course who you beat, not just how many.

  26. Profile photo of azzkika

    azzkika

    February 20, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    The point Maynard was making is that the UFC LW division is so incredibly stacked that winning that belt does make you the best in the world because of who you have beaten in order to earn it. LW division has far more depth than the MW or HW division and probably more than LHW and WW divisions too. To even get a shot usually means you are an exceptional fighter. You will not see guys of Sonnens calibre ever getting close to a title shot in the LW division.

  27. Profile photo of KeithFarrell

    KeithFarrell

    February 20, 2011 at 6:40 pm

    At this moment every UFC champ is the best in their divison. And most of them are miles ahead of all other champs, except Cain and Alistair

  28. Profile photo of MD777

    MD777

    February 20, 2011 at 6:49 pm

    Maynard pulls off this fight against Frankie.imo

  29. Profile photo of azzkika

    azzkika

    February 20, 2011 at 7:36 pm

    You cannot assume they are miles ahead of other champs. There is a good probability most of them are, but quite often as the case was with Ali, popular gets mistaken for best. The UFC fighters get more following purely because of where they fight. That does not immediately transfer to the UFC have ALL of the best fighters, although it is fair to say they have most of the best fighters.

  30. Profile photo of SVGoogle

    SVGoogle

    February 22, 2011 at 1:36 am

    I think Anthony Pettis from WEC is better than both figthers, Although my favourite of the Rematch is Maynard

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