MMA UK interviews Top lightweight, Gray Maynard

We recently did an interview with top lightweight contender Gray Maynard for MMA UK. He tells us about how he got into the MMA game, what he thinks of Kenny Florian and he fires back at the critcism some people give him for being a “lay and pray” wrestler.

Gray training at Xtreme Couture

 

Hey Gray, how’s the training going?

Training is great! I’ve been really pumped up about this fight for a long time

For those of us who haven’t seen you fight before or know much about your history, can you give the fans a brief description of how you got into MMA?

I wrestled my whole life.  After college I tried out for the 2004 Olympic team and didn’t make it. I ended up moving back home to Las Vegas afterwards and MMA was really big here. I got involved to keep in shape and was fortunate enough to start training with Randy Couture. I’ve never looked back since!

You’re well known for your wrestling skills and it seems that wrestling is having a resurgent as of late in MMA. Would you say that wrestling is arguably the best starting point for an MMA fighter to have?

Yes, it teaches great work ethic and it’s a great base to have for learning all the other disciplines.

Who was the biggest influence for you when you thought “I want to become an MMA fighter”?

Randy Couture has a big influence for me in the sport.

Some people have criticised you for using you’re wrestling skills and not showing much skills for striking. However, would you say that you’re the type of fighter who likes to grind out wins and try and break your opponents will or are you trying to get better with your striking?

I’d say I have a 9 sec KO (One of the fastest in the UFC), I out boxed Frank Edgar who is the champ now, and my last 3 (Jim Miller, Roger Huerta, Nate Diaz) were pretty much all stand up fights with me winning. I’ve proved my striking is one of the best in the division, but nobody has been able to stop my wrestling in the fights either. I just don’t give them a chance anywhere it goes.

What aspect of your game have you been training the most for your fight with Florian and what do you see as his main strengths?

Florian is a well-rounded fighter so I’ve been working on everything. He’s pretty good southpaw and good jujitsu from the top.

Florian has been quoted as saying that you’re the “biggest lightweight that he has ever fought”. What do you usually weigh before you start the cutting process and have you ever considered moving up a division to make the cutting process easier?

Before my camp starts, if I’m training a lot, I say around 175-180 pounds. If I’m injured or something and can’t really train I can get up to 185-188. I’ve been cutting weight my whole life so I got it down to a science. I’m not going to think about moving up until I reach my goals at this weight class.

There’s a lot of talent in the lightweight division in the UFC. Who would you like to fight in the division that you haven’t fought yet?

Right now all I want to fight is Kenny Florian, that’s what’s in front of me and that’s all I care about.

You’re the only fighter that has beaten Frank Edgar. Were you disappointed that you didn’t get the first shot at his title although a lot people were calling for you to get the first shot?

I think it was more of a timing thing. They wanted BJ on the April card, so Frankie was ready to start training camp and I needed to get knee surgery. I really appreciate all the support from the fans though.

Thanks for your time Gray. Is there anyone you’d like to thank or shout-out?

MMA Elite, Everlast, XCAP.tv, XtremeCouture.tv, TCB

Maynard takes on Kenny Florian at UFC 118 in Boston

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  1. […] MMA UK interviews Top lightweight, Gray Maynard […]


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