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Gray Maynard: Bully Of The UFC LW Division

UFC 89 will be upon us this weekend with four of the eleven bouts taking place in the UFC LW division. This division is nearly as deep as the UFC LHW division if not deeper. However, none of the LW fighters on the UFC 89 card are contenders at the present time. The bully of the UFC LW division will be at work the following weekend at UFC 90 against Rich Clementi. The bully I'm referring to is none other than TUF 5 alum Gray Maynard.

TUF 5 has produced two promising lightweight fighters in Nathan Diaz and Gray Maynard. The two fought on the show with Diaz submitting Maynard via guillotine. Diaz has been given more of a push from the UFC hype machine obviously since he was the champion from TUF 5. However, Maynard is undefeated as well(in UFC competition) and has quietly won 3 fights in a row with the last one being over contender and former undefeated fighter in Frankie Edgar. Maynard used his wrestling base to control the smaller Edgar while also showing an improved striking game in the process. Maynard is a huge LW and has shown that he is capable of keeping a furious pace despite his large size. As I mentioned earlier, Maynard will be fighting Rich Clementi at UFC 90. Clementi is a savvy veteran who has sort of revived his career after appearing on The Ultimate Fighter 4. He's won 6 fights in a row while finishing four of his opponents in that same time span.

Some people may consider Clementi as a step down in competition for Maynard, but he's a savvy veteran. However, I believe Maynard can use his size and wrestling to make Clementi wilt under the pressure. He'll be able to dictate where the fight takes place and that's a big advantage he'll have over most opponents in the LW division. Appropriately named the "Bully", Maynard could quite possibly be the dark horse of the UFC LW division. All he needs to do is keep winning, and start finishing his opponents which is something he'll learn to do as he gains more experience.