Carlos Condit admits Demian Maia -- who he is scheduled to fight in the main event of UFC on FOX 21 on Aug., 27, 2016 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada -- is a "tough" opponent given his world class Brazilian jiu-jitsu skills. That said, "Natural Born Killer" also believes Maia "plays it safe," which is the reason he isn’t where he wants to be as far as rankings go and doesn’t get the respect he deserves from his Welterweight peers.
However, according to Maia, his gameplan is far from a safe one. If anything, it’s a dominant one, as he rarely gives his foes any chance to pop off any offense of their own while constantly looking for the submission win.
He responded to Condit’s comments on a recent edition of "The MMA Hour."
"I more than fight safe. My last fight, I made it look easier. It looked easy, but it was not an easy fight. All my last fights were against very tough guys. I was able to put my game well, and when I put my game well it looks like the fight becomes more safe in a way. When the fight is more tight, it is more exciting to the public. But when you dominate somebody and the guy doesn’t have too much chance, then the public knows who is going to win so you lose the surprise factor of the fight. It’s not about playing safe because I was trying to submit all of the time. I was trying to submit all of my last fights. I did two submissions, or I try all the time. My game is to dominate the submission, to not lose it. That is the principle of my Brazilian jiu-jitsu game. So, when you don’t give a chance to your opponent, that’s not playing it safe, that’s a gameplan. For him, I admire his style, I like to see his fights. I’m a jiu-jitsu guy and I like to see strikers. There is more of a chance for something unexpected to happen. It makes the fight for people who are not too into technique think its more fun of a fight."
Of course, a striking specialist like Condit who has been involved in more stand up wars and classic battles (like this one) doesn’t often find himself on the ground trading submission attempts with his foes, so you can see where his point of view is coming from.
So when the two men lock horns come fight night, it will truly be a striker vs grappler match up that pits two of the very best in their respective discipline against one another.
And only one can prevail.