Despite being removed from the rankings after his contract with the UFC recently expired, Demian Maia wants one more fight in the Octagon.
Maia lost a unanimous decision to Belal Muhammad at UFC 263 in June, and after the fight, UFC president Dana White hinted it would likely be the 43-year-old Brazilian’s last fight in the UFC. However, Maia said that he was hoping the UFC would give him one more fight, and he called upon fellow legends such as Nate Diaz for his final farewell fight. Ultimately, it appears as though the UFC has made the decision to sever ties with Maia following his recent contract expiration. However, Maia tells MMAFighting.com he is still hopeful that he will get one last fight in the Octagon, and ideally that fight would take place in Brazil.
“I’ve fought my entire life in the UFC. That’s my home. I want to do one last fight there, and I think it depends on what happens in Brazil. That’s a feeling my manager and I have. If they are having shows with fans here soon, I think that will draw interest from the UFC to have me fighting. I’m waiting and seeing what happens, but I do want to fight one last fight. I’m still training twice a day,” Maia said.
The loss to Muhammad was Maia’s second straight defeat following a brutal KO loss to Gilbert Burns in 2020 that essentially signalled the downside of Maia’s MMA career after having won three straight fights prior to that. Despite the losses to Muhammad and Burns, Maia was still a top-15 ranked fighter, so perhaps there is a way for the UFC to bring him back for one more fight. However, it would also be understandable if the promotion moved on from Maia, as it has also recently let go of other aging veterans such as Anderson Silva.
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