It’s easy to forget that Demian Maia once fought for the middleweight belt. I mean, the fight was against Anderson Silva, who for some reason didn’t want to engage, so the whole affair sucked. But the passing years have only made the most dangerous jiu-jitsu practitioner in the cage only more dangerous – and more seasoned – and now Maia is actually pretty beloved by fans.
It took some time, but he’s earned another shot.
This go-around will likely be a bit different. Number one, it’s at welterweight, where the champ is Tyron Woodley. And number two, Maia has only gotten better. Does that mean the Brazilian will for sure be wearing that gold strap around his waist at the end of the night? Of course not. But Maia definitely deserves to be there, and more than when he fought Silva, he has a huge chance at coming away victorious.
Mull that over, and watch Maia do some work.