One of the last remaining pioneers of freestyle wrestling and a fighter who can rightly be called an artist of the same is Demian Maia. The second oldest fighter on the UFC roster has been a member of the promotion for a full 14 years, but it is clear that the 43-year-old Brazilian is nearing the end of his career.
Due to his well-known style, he did not receive any significant damage in terms of strokes, but his body simply ages and it is not easy to perform at the same high level as before. But we’ll be watching him for another minimal upcoming weekend, when he will face Belal Muhammad in the main program of the UFC 263 event in a fight he’s aware could be his last.
Still, he believes he could do some more, especially if he achieves his 23rd victory in the Octagon. "I'm nearing the end of my career and this could be my last fight. But I have to tell you that I did everything very well in prep camp.
I felt like I could do one more or a few more."
Maia on his opponent
"Probably another one after that. It will depend on a lot of things. Sometimes you look really good in the gym and then you can't transfer that to the Octagon."
"If I succeed in that and if Dana White and the UFC want it, then I'd do another fight after this. But it's possible how this the last one, ”Maia honestly admitted to MMA Junkie reporters during a media gathering.
Maia is currently ranked ninth in the challenger rankings, coming after a defeat by Gilbert Burns, breaking his three-win streak. At the same time, Muhammad is three positions below him, but also with a streak of eight wins in the last nine fights, not counting the annulment against Leon Edwards.
"He's a great fighter whose best time is yet to come. He's definitely making progress. He's a good wrestler and he's using it great, but he's been fighting a lot more punching in recent years."
"He believes in his fighting skills on his feet. He's as dangerous as any ranked fighter. This is not an easy fight, but I have been in such situations many times in my life, ”Demian said of his opponent’s whose nickname is“ Remember the Name ”.
Muhammad will do his best to make everyone remember him even better after this fight. It is up to the Brazilian to prevent this.