“I think in this division, I have the longest sequence of victories, more than Woodley. So, mathematically, I think I’m the one that deserves to fight for the title. But it doesn’t depend on me. It depends on the fans to ask. I think I need that help from the media and everyone. I think it’s the time. I’m not 20 years old anymore to wait around. I did my best. I went down a division 10 fights ago, I’ve got eight victories. I lost two fights against very tough opponents, one by split decision. I’ve proved what I had to prove in this division. I want this chance. I want the chance to fight for the title.”
-Demian Maia makes his case for a Welterweight Title fight after his UFC 198 win over Matt Brown during the post-fight press conference (via MMAJunkie.com).
Penick’s Analysis: Maia’s absolutely deserving of a shot at the UFC Welterweight Championship. Actually getting one might be a different story. Given Woodley’s inactivity I’d be in favor of Maia getting a crack at Robbie Lawler first, though it’s unlikely to even be considered right now. Maia’s ground dominance is elite, but it hasn’t always meant the most aesthetically pleasing fights to some portion of the fanbase. He’s done enough to earn that opportunity, and if the UFC wants to give it to him they will. Unfortunately for him, he may need to fight again in order to keep himself in line for that shot. It’s the nature of the UFC, and Maia’s far from the first fighter to be in this spot.
[Photo (c) Gary A. Vasquez via USA Today Sports]
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