Gray Maynard wants to make featherweight statement, but 155-pound bouts also will do

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Filed under: MMAjunkie Radio, News, Radio Highlight, UFC, Videos

Gray Maynard wants to stay active. So, in order to do that, he’s willing to circulate between two weight classes.

Maynard (13-6-1 MMA, 11-6-1 UFC) had some success as a UFC lightweight, having twice fought for the title in memorable back-to-back encounters with then-champ Frankie Edgar. From 2013 to 2015, though, things didn’t go so well for Maynard, who went on a four-fight skid in the 155-pound division.

But then a move to featherweight breathed new life into Maynard’s UFC career. Having gone 2-1 since the move, the former title challenger was last seen easily getting past an opponent 12 years his junior in Teruto Ishihara at the TUF 25 Finale.

Moving forward, Maynard still wants to make a run for the top at featherweight. But, if competing at 155 pounds is what it takes to get booked, then that’s just fine by him.

“(At) 145, I really want to make a statement,” Maynard recently told MMAjunkie Radio. “I want to get to the top names. (At) 155, I believe I could do that too. But I’m down at (145), and it’s pretty easy to make. But if I’ve got to go up to get a fight, I’ll do it if that’s what it takes.”

Maynard hasn’t been able to get more than two fights in the same year since 2008. But, despite realistically knowing that life sometimes gets in the way, he’s hoping 2018 will bring three octagon showings.

In order for that to happen, Maynard wants to start early: preferably in January, before the February arrival of his second child. As for whom he’d like that meeting to involve?

“It doesn’t really matter,” Maynard said. “Just trying to get back on track to get to the top names. Whoever it is, let’s do it.”

Another way to increase octagon activity, as guys like Alex Oliveira and Marlon Vera would know, is being willing to step in on short-notice. But for some, especially veterans, there comes a time when taking these risky calls simply doesn’t pay off.

So which one is it for the 38-year-old Maynard?

“It interests me,” Maynard said. “I’m at that point where my career has got to make sense. And it does kind of interest me if it’s a good name. I pretty much stay in the gym year-round. So I’d do that, yeah.”

To hear more from Maynard, check out the video above.

And for more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

MMAjunkie Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Stream or download MMAjunkie Radio #2566 with Gray Maynard, Jose Torres, Eric Nicksick

Stream or download Wednesday’s episode of MMAjunkie Radio with guests Gray Maynard, Jose Torres and Eric Nicksick.

Maynard stopped by the studio to talk about his future in the UFC featherweight and lightweight divisions. Torres, who defends his bantamweight title against Gleidson DeJesus on Friday at Titan FC 46, talked about his preparation. Nicksick, who is the general manager at Xtreme Couture, also co-hosted the show and shared what’s next for the gym and its fighters.

You can listen below or stream the entire episode on AudioBoom.com.

Filed under: News, Radio, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Watch MMAjunkie Radio here (1 p.m. ET) with Gray Maynard (in studio), Jose Torres, Eric Nicksick

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MMAjunkie Radio kicks off today at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) with guests Gray Maynard, Jose Torres and Eric Nicksick.

Longtime UFC lightweight Maynard, a two-time title challenger in that division, now is 2-1 as a featherweight. He’ll stop by the studio to talk about what’s coming up next for him. Torres, Titan FC’s flyweight and bantawmeight dual champion, will defend his 135-pound title on Friday against Gleidson DeJesus at Titan FC 46. And Nicksick, the general manager at the Xtreme Couture gym in Las Vegas, will co-host the show in the studio.

MMAjunkie Radio airs from 1 to 3 p.m. ET (10 a.m. to noon PT), live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. You can watch and listen live on MMAjunkie’s Facebook and YouTube pages. Additionally, SiriusXM Rush (Ch. 93) carries a replay later in the day (8-10 p.m. ET) and the following morning (7-9 a.m. ET), or catch a replay on demand.

MMAjunkie Radio listener guide:

  • HOW TO WATCH (ON WEB): Watch a live stream on MMAjunkie’s Facebook or YouTube pages.
  • HOW TO CALL: MMAjunkie Radio takes phone calls from listeners throughout the show. Call into the MMAjunkie Radio hotline at (866) 522-2846.
  • HOW TO DISCUSS: The MMAjunkie MMA Forums has a section devoted solely to MMAjunkie Radio. Stop by the MMAjunkie Radio forum to discuss the show, interact with the hosts, suggest future guests and catch up on the latest MMAjunkie Radio news.
  • HOW TO VISIT THE SHOW: You can watch MMAjunkie Radio live and in person at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino on the world-famous Las Vegas Strip. The booth is located in the resort’s Race & Sports Book next to the Mandalay Bay poker room. To plan a trip to Sin City and MMAjunkie Radio, go to www.mandalaybay.com.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Undefeated Jeremy Kennedy explains Gray Maynard callout after UFC on FOX 25 win

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UNIONDALE, N.Y. – After adding a third octagon win to his undefeated record at Saturday’s UFC on FOX 25, Jeremy Kennedy quickly fired off the next name on his hitlist: Gray Maynard.

But unlike other callouts that took place that night, there is no bad blood behind Kennedy’s (11-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC). Speaking to reporters after his  unanimous decision win over Kyle Bochniak (7-2 MMA, 1-2 UFC), the featherweight offered a respectful and simple explanation for his interest in Maynard (13-6-1 MMA, 11-6-1 UFC).

“Everyone knows who Gray Maynard is,” Kennedy said after the preliminary card scrap, which streamed on UFC Fight Pass from NYCB LIVE at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y. “He’s coming off a win. He’s right out there, you know, outside of the top-15 – if not, right around there. I’m looking to break into the top-15. He just fought (earlier this month at The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale).

“I think around the same timeline, it just makes the most sense that way. But, really, anybody that – I want a guy that has a name. I can tell people, ‘Hey, I’m fighting this guy and they know’ instead of me having to explain it or whatever. I’m in the UFC now. I want to keep fighting these name guys. If they’re in the top 15, even better. But I want them coming off of a win.”

While Maynard is indeed coming off a (big) win, a dominant unanimous decision over Teruto Ishihara, he’s seen a rough few years in the octagon. After two memorable title battles with then-champ Frankie Edgar in 2011 – a split draw and a fourth-round knockout loss – he followed a win over Clay Guida with four straight losses. Maynard, now 37, then decided to drop to the 145-pound division, where he’s gone 2-1.

While Kennedy’s record certainly lacks the high-profile names featured on Maynard’s, the 24-year-old Canadian prospect has most recently taken unanimous decisions over Alessandro Ricci, Rony Jason and Bochniak to round out a perfect pro record.

In what would be a classic up-and-comer vs. veteran battle, there certainly wouldn’t be any lack of respect on Kennedy’s end.

“I watched Gray Maynard when he fought Frankie Edgar on that New Year’s card (UFC 125) way back in the day,” Kennedy said. “I was a fan, I was just a kid there. So to think now, fast forward, how many years, I could be possibly fighting him. That’d be amazing.”

 

Ideally, Kennedy says he’d like to take a four-month window between fights. But if Maynard is OK with ditching his own original target and happens be available for the UFC 216 card in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, the Sept. 9 date might just work.

“It’s a little close, but I’m healthy,” Kennedy said. “It’s a Canadian card. Makes sense. If he’s ready, I’m ready.”

To hear from Kennedy, check out the video above.

And for complete coverage of UFC on FOX 25, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

Stream or download MMAjunkie Radio #2482 with Joey Diaz, Brad Tavares and Gray Maynard

Stream or download Friday’s edition of MMAjunkie Radio with guests Joey Diaz, Brad Tavares and Gray Maynard.

Comedian Diaz was our in-studio guest host and helped us make final predictions for The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale and UFC 213. Tavares and Maynard joined the program to soak up Junkie Karma; fighters who appear on MMAjunkie Radio on the day of their fight are 57-14. Tonight at the TUF 25 Finale, Tavares faces Elias Theodorou and Maynard meets Teruto Ishihara.

You can listen below or download the episode from SoundCloud.

Filed under: News, Radio, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Gray Maynard calls out Artem Lobov after TUF 25 Finale – because he doesn't want another Ryan Hall

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LAS VEGAS – Two-time lightweight title challenger Gray Maynard celebrated a win over Teruto Ishihara at The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale while venting at his previous opponent, Ryan Hall.

Maynard, who officially dropped to featherweight a year ago, called out critics who wrote him off after a loss to Hall and asked to fight Artem Lobov, declaring: “I’ll never take another fight that the person’s a coward.

“Everybody is like, ‘He got beat, he’s done.’ No, I’m not done. That was nothing. He didn’t even punch me. I barely even punched him. There was no risk in that fight (with Hall). It was a waste of time. And everybody still called me out. That’s not my fault. He’s the (expletive); he’s the coward. And I’ll never take a fight like that again.”

Maynard (13-6-1 MMA, 11-6-1 UFC) went back to his wrestling roots against Ishihara (9-4-2 MMA, 2-2-1 UFC), repeatedly taking the fight to the mat and grinding out the Japanese prospect. Judges ruled it a complete shutout, awarding unanimous 30-26 scorecards in the UFC Fight Pass-streamed bout at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Maynard came into the fight on a bad skid, losing five of seven bouts since a title rematch with now ex-lightweight champ Frankie Edgar ended in a knockout loss. But he said MMA observers who advised him to retire only provided motivation.

“Yeah, they have (written me off),” he said. “But that’s OK, because every article, every tweet I see about ‘Gray should retire,’ ‘Gray should do this,’ all I read is what they would do if they were me. They would retire. They would quit. I don’t quit. I don’t quit until I win.”

Win he did. And at 145 pounds, Maynard feels unstoppable.

Check out his emotional post-fight interview in the video above.

And for complete coverage of The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

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Source: MMA Junkie

TUF 25 Finale results: Gray Maynard smothers Teruto Ishihara with wrestling for easy win

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Perhaps UFC analyst Todd Grisham summed things up perfectly when he said the fight between Gray Maynard and Teruto Ishihara looked like a big brother fighting his little brother.

And little brother simply had no answer.

Try as he might, Ishihara couldn’t combat Maynard’s impressive wrestling display, leading to a dominant unanimous-decision victory for Maynard. All three judges scored it 30-26.

The featherweight bout opened today’s UFC event, The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale, at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The preliminary-card bout streamed on UFC Fight Pass prior to the FS1-televised prelims and main card.

One round after the other, Maynard (13-6-1 MMA, 11-6-1 UFC) set the tone early by taking down Ishihara (9-4-2 MMA, 2-2-1 UFC) and smothering him on the mat. Each time Ishihara tried getting back to his feet, Maynard would remain on him like glue and get him back to the mat. If Ishihara did manage to escape to his feet, Maynard wouldn’t waste time before perfectly timing a takedown attempt.

“That’s the hardest way to win,” Maynard said, “with those takedowns and grinding a person out.”

Maynard twice almost finished the fight in the third round. He opened the frame with a quick takedown. While on the mat, Maynard had a kimura in deep that Ishihara managed to get out of. Not long after, Maynard locked in a guillotine up against the cage. But credit Ishihara for finding a way out.

The third round saw a little bit of controversy as Ishihara hit Maynard with illegal up-kicks to the face as Maynard postured up on his knees. The referee issued a warning to Ishihara, who also got some time to breather.

It didn’t matter, though. Maynard rode him out for the final 90 seconds to lock up the decisive victory.

Up-to-the-minute TUF 25 Finale results include:

  • Gray Maynard def. Teruto Ishihara via unanimous decision (30-26, 30-26, 30-26)

For more on The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

(MMAjunkie’s John Morgan and Steven Marrocco contributed to this report on site in Las Vegas.)

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Watch MMAjunkie Radio here (1 p.m. ET) with Brad Tavares, Gray Maynard, Joey Diaz

Filed under: News, UFC

MMAjunkie Radio kicks off today at 1 p.m. ET (10 a.m. PT) with guests Brad Tavares, Gray Maynard and Joey Diaz.

Tavares meets Elias Theodorou and Maynard takes on Teruto Ishihara tonight at The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale. Comedian “Coco” Diaz is our in-studio guest host.

MMAjunkie Radio airs from 1 to 3 p.m. ET (10 a.m. to noon PT), live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. You can watch and listen live on MMAjunkie’s Facebook and YouTube pages. Additionally, SiriusXM Rush (Ch. 93) carries a replay later in the day (8-10 p.m. ET) and the following morning (7-9 a.m. ET), or catch a replay on demand.

MMAjunkie Radio listener guide:

  • HOW TO WATCH (ON WEB): Watch a live stream on MMAjunkie’s Facebook or YouTube pages.
  • HOW TO CALL: MMAjunkie Radio takes phone calls from listeners throughout the show. Call into the MMAjunkie Radio hotline at (866) 522-2846.
  • HOW TO DISCUSS: The MMAjunkie MMA Forums has a section devoted solely to MMAjunkie Radio. Stop by the MMAjunkie Radio forum to discuss the show, interact with the hosts, suggest future guests and catch up on the latest MMAjunkie Radio news.
  • HOW TO VISIT THE SHOW: You can watch MMAjunkie Radio live and in person at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino on the world-famous Las Vegas Strip. The booth is located in the resort’s Race & Sports Book next to the Mandalay Bay poker room. To plan a trip to Sin City and MMAjunkie Radio, go to www.mandalaybay.com.

Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie