TUF Brazil Finale III: Demian Maia Says he can “Breathe” After Latest Win, Discusses Stacked Welterweight Division
By FCF Staff
Demian Maia ended a two fight losing skid at the TUF Brazil III Finale Saturday night, and with the victory, the jiu-jitsu guru has likely ensured he remains a top ten ranked welterweight.
It wasn’t that long ago when Maia was closing in on a title shot at 170, thanks to victories over Rick Story, Dong Hyun Kim and Jon Fitch. After those victories, however, Maia was decisioned by Jake Shields and Rory MacDonald.
So, following his unanimous decision win over Alexander Yakovlev on Saturday, Maia was asked about who he hopes to fight next.
“It’s very difficult now; we’re going to see many fights at welterweight,” Maia relayed at the post fight press conference. “If I’m not mistaken, we need to see, Dong Hyun Kim (versus Hector Lombard), who I fought, what will happen. Rory (MacDonald), (Tyron) Woodley, (Robbie) Lawler with Matt Brown, so those are three fights that I think will define a lot.”
“I don’t really know. This victory alone brings me back to be able to breathe,” the #8 ranked welterweight furthered. “I’m not really worried about that now. It depends on what gets done. Our welterweight division today is the division that has the most athletes. There are 102 athletes, different to, for example, the light-heavyweight which has 38. So this is a great class which has the most competition.”
Since dropping down from middleweight in 2012, following a loss to Chris Weidman, Maia has gone 4-2.
The TUF Brazil III Finale was hosted by the Ibirapuera Gymnasium in Sao Paulo, Brazil.