Last week, former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight contender, Clay Guida, announced his intentions to move down to the promotion's featherweight division after competing at 155-pounds his entire career.
Coming off two consecutive losses, "The Carpenter" says the move didn't come at the request of anyone over at Zuffa headquarters, but rather his own choice, saying it was time for a change on his terms, seeking a new division he can call home with the hopes of finally obtaining UFC gold.
After failing to secure a shot at the lightweight title, losing to Ben Henderson at UFC on Fox 1, Guida wasn't successful in his next outing, either, dropping a unanimous decision to former two-time number one lightweight contender, Gray Maynard.
Guida's performance against Maynard drew the ire of UFC President Dana White, who wasn't thrilled with the gameplan executed by one of the most energetic fighters on the promotion's roster and the direction given to him by his head trainer, Greg Jackson, whom White has had several opinions of in recent memory.
Three months removed from the fight, Guida talked about the criticism he received for his performance and says his fight was no worse than others inside the Octagon, citing other bouts that weren't exactly edge-of-your-seat thrillers that had him "snoring" at the bar.
Appearing on "The MMA Hour," "The Carpenter" had this to say about the backlash of "The Bully" fight.
"Logical fans that actually go back and pick that fight apart, and didn't just judge it by the first time seeing it [agree with me]. Don't get me wrong, I definitely don't think it was the most exciting fight that I've put on, or that the UFC has had as a main event in a while. But then if you see the fight, I believe, less than a month later, the Renan Barao and Urijah Faber fight ... I remember they were actually holding hands three or four times in the fight. I don't know, don't quote me but I'm pretty sure you know what I'm talking about. The big heavyweights that fought that night (Cheick Kongo vs. Shawn Jordan), I think I actually feel asleep at the bar. The Tim Boetsch and Hector Lombard [fight], I think someone had to actually wake me up because I was snoring at the bar. So I wouldn't say my fight was the most boring. But a logical fan and a logical analyst goes back there and watches the fight, and watches my gameplan and sees the footwork, sees the improvement that we have made ... If you look, I outstruck him. I was much faster than him. It felt like I was two or three steps ahead of Gray the whole time. I outwrestled him, I stopped all of his takedowns. I defended submissions, got a little bit of ground and pound, broke his nose, cut his face. I got my hair pulled numerous times. Let's see, the list goes on. Oh yeah, profanity, words were thrown in my direction along with being flipped off in the cage. So it's whatever. If people are going to boo me because of that, then so be it. But I know there's logical fans out there that realize what fight they saw.I'm sure [Maynard] still knows what happened in the cage that evening."
Now, looking to stake his claim in the 145-pound weight class, Guida looks for a fresh start, eyeing a run at the title that is currently held by Jose Aldo. He reveals that he has no idea who the UFC matchmakers will pair him up with in his debut match; however, he is looking at making a run at the title right out of the gate.
"The fact that I'm pretty undersized at lightweight, I think now is the time. Coming off of two losses, I'm going down on my terms. No one is forcing me to. It's just, I'm going to do things on my terms. We made a pretty good couple runs at lightweight, and who's the say we won't go [back] up there after a few fights. You never know. I don't really have any names picked out. But I would definitely like a higher profile fight. I would like to fight someone who has a couple of wins under their belt at 145 [pounds] that's going to put us in position to make a run at the featherweight -- I'm still getting used to saying that -- featherweight division right out of the gate."
Anyone agree with Guida's remarks?
Was he the much busier fighter in the Maynard fight? Did he receive too much criticism when compared to the other fights/fighters "The Carpenter" mentioned?