Guida talks Maynard bout at UFC on FX 4
What a long strange trip it’s been for Clay Guida.
The hyperactive fan-favorite has watched his profile in the UFC lightweight division change over the past few years, as he’s gone from being known as a fighter who always brings the scrap; to one of the world’s top competitors in his weight class.
Over the past 12 months he has watched his stock rise after a hard-nosed win over former WEC champion Anthony Pettis, only to see it fall after coming out on the losing end of a decision against Benson Henderson, who is the current holder of the 155 lb. title. This Friday night in the main event of "UFC on FX 4" Guida will have the opportunity to regain his footing in the division when he faces former number one contender Gray Maynard. He knows there is a lot on the line and feels the competitive fires are burning hotter than ever before.
“It’s absolutely a must win fight,” Guida told HeavyMMA. “I came off a close decision loss against Ben Henderson. I was close to a submission at the end of the fight and he was able to squeak out a couple of rounds throughout. He got his hand raised at the end and it just shows me how close I am to the top of the division.
"That loss motivated me more than ever and I’m more driven and hungry than I’ve ever been. Friday night is going to be a big test. I’m excited for the challenge and opportunity that lies ahead."
Now, that Guida finds himself facing the division's best, "The Carpenter" feels as if he belongs right alongside fighters such as Henderson, regardless of his loss. And a win over Maynard Friday night is exactly what Guida thinks could grant him another shot at the champ.
“I’m a fan of the sport so I’m pretty aware of the guys who are at the top of the division. I think Henderson, Edgar, Gray and I are the top four guys in the division. I think a big win over Maynard is going to set me apart from the rest of the pack. If I finish him I could see possible number one contender status but I’m just focused on a strong performance on Friday night.”
With all his focus on Maynard, Guida is once again prepared to put forth an exciting effort for the fans and earn a victory in the main event in Atlantic City. Regardless of the fact that he and Maynard are coming off losses, Guida knows their main event fight simply symbolizes the heightened level of competition in the 155 lb. division.
“It’s an honor to headline this card,” Guida said. “The fact the UFC granted us the main event with both of us coming off a loss really says something about the lightweight division. It shows you the depth and competition we have at 155 pounds. It also shows we are regarded as two of the top lightweights in the world and this card is stacked from top to bottom. I really think Cub Swanson and Ross Pearson is going to be a ‘bang-em up’ war and could possibly get ‘Fight of the Night’. Sam Stout vs. Spencer Fishers Is going to be awesome. Hatsu Hioki vs. Ricardo Lamas is going to be a great fight on the undercard and it is a possible number one contender fight in the featherweight division. There are a lot of fights being overshadowed by UFC 147 this weekend and fights coming up like the Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen rematch. What I can tell fans is, don’t blink and tune into FX Friday night because it’s going to be awesome.”
Check out Heavy.com's exclusive interview with Gray Maynard