Edgar will look to successfully defend his UFC Lightweight Title for the second time on Saturday.
Saturday’s Main Event is for UFC Lightweight Championship
The highly anticipated showdown between UFC Lightweight Champion Frankie Edgar (13-1) and Gray Maynard (10-0) will go down this Saturday, when UFC 125: Resolution heads into MGM Grand Garden Arena. The main event pairing presents Edgar with the opportunity to avenge the only loss of his professional career, which came at the hands of Maynard at UFC Fight Night 13 in 2008.
“I’m very excited to be fighting New Year’s Day against a fighter that has a win over me,” Edgar stated. “I’m looking forward to putting on a great show and avenging my one loss. There are still a lot of people that are doubting me, and that’s fine. I’ve learned a lot since our last fight, and I plan on successfully defending my title.”
Fighting out of Toms River, New Jersey, Edgar turned the heads of the entire MMA community in 2010 by taking the UFC Lightweight Title from the seemingly unstoppable BJ Penn in April, and he then dominated him in a rematch this past August. A winner of five consecutive bouts and eight of nine since joining the UFC, Edgar is well known for his superior head movement and striking ability, despite wrestling being the foundation of his game. A big reason why Edgar is so advanced in his stand-up is because he looks to the boxing world to keep him sharp. Beginning in 2008, he started to enlist the services of undefeated junior middleweight boxer and fellow New Jersey native Denis “Da Momma’s Boy” Douglin (12-0, 8 KOs), and the two have been working as sparring partners at Douglin’s New Breed Boxing & Fitness gym in Freehold ever since.
“He’s improved tremendously,” Douglin said of Edgar’s progression. “I remember when I first started sparring with him, probably about a year and a half ago. He always had good hands, but now he’s taken it to the next level. Gray has a lot to worry about when they fight this weekend.”
Maynard wrestled alongside former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Rashad Evans at Michigan State University, where he was a three-time NCAA All-American. After he completed college, the Las Vegas native was recruited by Penn to work as his sparring partner, which eventually led to Maynard training with UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture. He was then selected to compete on the Ultimate Fighter 5, reaching the semifinals on the show before succumbing to a guillotine choke at the hands of Nate Diaz (matches on TUF are not included on a fighter’s professional record). After an impressive showing on TUF, Maynard received a contract from UFC President Dana White, and he has since railed off eight consecutive wins. His most recent victory was a unanimous decision over Kenny Florian on the Edgar-Penn II card, securing the title shot for Saturday.
“I’m excited and honored to be fighting Frank Edgar in a lightweight title bout for the UFC,” Maynard remarked. “Edgar is a great opponent. I’m looking forward to an exciting and tough fight with him. After years of hard work and sacrifice, this brings me one step closer to my goal of winning the belt.”
The original fight between the two premiere lightweights was featured on MTV’s reality series, True Life, in an episode that followed Edgar and two other Mixed Martial Artists in their pursuit of success as a professional fighter. After taking the match the distance, Maynard emerged victorious via unanimous decision.