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Demian Maia vs. Carlos Condit Preview

After Rory MacDonald’s recent signing with Bellator along with Tyron Woodley’s victory over Robbie Lawler to win the UFC welterweight championship, this main event fight has become a title-eliminator.

Stephen Thompson is undoubtedly the top UFC welterweight contender, but after that Condit and Maia are right there. Condit challenged Lawler in his last fight for the welterweight championship and lost via a close split decision. The fight earned Fight of the Night honors and many thought Condit should have been named the winner. Highlights from Lawler vs Condit at UFC 195 can be seen here. (The video is mirrored, which is why Condit seems to be fighting southpaw and Lawler seems to be fighting orthodox.)

Demian Maia vs. Carlos Condit Preview

Maia is currently on a five-fight winning streak. His most recent victories came over top welterweight contenders, Matt Brown, Gunnar Nelson and Neil Magny. Two of Maia’s victories came via submission and the other three were unanimous decisions. While all of those victories were impressive, Maia will be stepping it up in level of competition against Condit.

Keys for Maia:

Maia is known for his superb grappling ability. While Maia’s not that successful taking down his opponents according to his fight statistics, he’s deadly if he does happen to get his opponent to the mat. Eleven of Maia’s 23 wins have come via submission and he’s not a one-trick pony either. Maia has submission victories coming by way of neck crank, two by triangle choke, six by rear-naked choke, one by guillotine choke and one by armbar.

Maia has only been finished in the UFC one time. It came all the way back in 2009 against Nate Marquardt at UFC 102. Maia will need to be patient in this fight and not get too dependent on landing a takedown. Condit has been in numerous wars and has also been in five-round fights. Maia needs to make sure he doesn’t gas himself out by trying to takedown Condit constantly. While it would be dangerous and downright stupid for Maia to try to stand and strike with Condit, he will need to exchange with Condit enough in order to open up the takedown.

Even though Maia doesn’t have a very high takedown success rate, he’s able to dominate his opponents if they allow him to get top position. Maia dominated Matt Brown at UFC 198. Highlights from that performance can be seen here.

Keys for Condit:

Condit is a very well-rounded fighter with exceptional striking and a good submission game as well. While Condit is mainly known for his striking, he’s also got 13 wins by submission. He’ll need to use his jiu-jitsu defense in order to keep Maia from being able to submit him. Any time this fight happens to go to the ground, Condit should look to either get back up, or land as much ground and pound as he can.

While being submitted might not be a huge concern for Condit, even though Maia is possibly the best grappler in the UFC, he’s been beaten with wrestling before. Against Johny Hendricks, Condit was taken down 12 times and eventually lost the fight. In his first championship fight against Georges St-Pierre, Condit was taken down seven times and lost.

The main key for Condit may be what he’s able to do in the clinch. Maia only lands slightly more than 30 percent of his takedowns, so he’ll likely be clinching and grabbing ahold of Condit in attempts to try to get him down. Condit needs to reverse Maia’s clinch attempts and pressure Maia against the cage. Condit throws devastating elbows and would demoralize Maia if he’s able to hold him against the cage and land some significant strikes. The advantage clearly goes to Condit when the fight is taking place in the center of the cage, but if he’s able to control the cage and control the clinch as well, he should have no problem picking Maia apart.


Maia’s only advantage in this fight comes if he is able to get Condit down and get top position. Other than that, Condit has the advantage in every other aspect. Expect Maia to shoot for a lot of takedowns and instigate a lot of clinching, while Condit will constantly be defending takedowns and landing knees and elbows in the clinch. If Condit can keep some distance and establish his range, expect another TKO finish for “The Natural Born Killer.”


Carlos Condit defeats Demian Maia via KO/TKO

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