Demian Maia (Pictures) debuted in the UFC in October 2007 with an impressive first-round submission of Ryan Jensen (Pictures). The Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt returns to the Octagon April 19 in Canada for a middleweight bout against Ed Herman (Pictures).

Sherdog.com spoke with Maia about that match and the future of the 185-pound weight class.

When the fight against Ed Herman (Pictures) started as a rumor on the Internet, the fans generally only talked about you finishing him. How do you see this situation?
Well, I don't follow forums and this Internet stuff. But I think Herman is a good fighter. He's not weak or something like that. He's a dangerous fighter and he developed a lot from his first fight to his last one. If I'm not wrong, I think the North American fans don't like Herman at all. I'm not sure. So perhaps due to this fact, they picked me to beat him. If we're talking about Herman, he's good. Taller than me, with a good wrestling base and very tough to be taken down.

Now that you know about the discussion, is this good for you or not?
For me it doesn't influence. When I step in the Octagon is when I'll see what will happen. But for Herman this can influence him in two distinct aspects. I mean he can use it to train more and more, to show that he can win. Or, on the other hand, he could reach the Octagon mentally weak. I believe more in the first option. Anyway, in the moment of the fight, what people have said before won't prevail. I already watched several MMA fights where the 100-percent favorite was schooled.

You've known about this fight since 2007. Have you been training since then?
We were supposed to fight in March, so I knew about him as my opponent at the end of last year. I am always training, but when a fight is confirmed I start to make my routine. I'd like to make a super training system of boxing, wrestling, BJJ, MMA sparring and conditioning everyday, but I can't make it happen. So I try to focus each piece of my training on what I will prioritize. My biggest priority is BJJ, but in a few stages of this preparation I increase the other aspects. I developed a system where I have everything settled until fight week, so I don't [lack training that] I need to compete in MMA. Just to mention an example, I had a seminar in Peru last month. So my routine changed, however I took the opportunity of traveling to train boxing with Daniel Aspe, an outstanding mixed martial artist who has a huge background in boxing.

Is boxing what you choose to fill out your game?
Not at all. I trained kung fu when I was a kid, so when I started in MMA I realized my high kicks were very good. I was surprised with my performance in Super Challenge in 2006 when I high kicked, and I kept training kicks because I liked them and I felt very good standing up with knees also. But my weakness was boxing. I had trouble in the half distance. In the long and short ones I was good, but between wasn't working. Now I think I improved this. I have the British fighter James Zikic (Pictures) supporting me here in Brazil. He is a pro boxer. I have my boxing coach, Andre Lopes, too, but Zikic is sparring with me and I feel a good evolution in this area. But this was in training. I can't say I'll knock Herman out [laughs].

You talked about Super Challenge, and in that competition you dominated two muay Thai experts in Vitelmo Kubis Bandeira and Gustavo Machado (Pictures). Landing kicks, closing the distance and handling them on the ground.
I believe I have two factors that helped me in this game. The combination of my standup experience when I was a kid conditioned me to this, plus my BJJ focused on self-defense, submissions, MMA and not on points. And I guess I was born to fight more MMA than BJJ. I know I need to develop a lot in MMA, but I feel very good when I'm fighting because we can use everything, and in BJJ we're a little limited. These are two different sports, you know. Well, I wished to be an MMA fighter first before BJJ. Since the sport wasn't mainstream I wanted to do it, so I guess naturally I got conditioned since I was a young martial artist.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Demian Maia interested in Carlos Condit fight in 2015

  • 3 days ago
  • 4 views

SAO PAULO -- Sidelined with a severe staph infection, Demian Maia discusses his recovery, the state of the UFC welterweight division, why he wants to fight Carlos Condit next, and more. read news >>

UFC targeting clash between Stipe Miocic and Ben Rothwell for UFC Dublin in October

  • 21 days ago
  • 1 views

A heavyweight bout between contenders Stipe Miocic and Ben Rothwell is being looked at for UFC Fight Night 76 in Dublin, Ireland. Though the bout is not official yet, that the fight is being targeted read news >>

Bellator 144 set for October with Marcos Galvao vs. Eduardo Dantas 2 in Connecticut

  • 21 days ago
  • 2 views

Marcos Galvao will put his bantamweight title on the line for the first time when he meets Eduardo Dantas in a rematch at Bellator 144. Filed under: Bellator, News read news >>

Coach: Rousey is ‘quicker, stronger and faster’ than Cyborg

  • 21 days ago
  • 4 views

Coach Edmond Tarverdyan discusses the latest chapter in the Rousey vs Cyborg saga, as well as why Rousey will not fight at catchweight or featherweight. read news >>

Marcos Galvao defends bantamweight title against Eduardo Dantas at Bellator 144

  • 22 days ago
  • 1 views

Bellator bantamweight champion Marcos Galvao will put his title on the line in October. "Loro", who captured the 135-pound belt with a second-round submission victory over Joe Warren in March, will l read news >>

Magny Back to Face Silva on Aug. 23

  • 23 days ago
  • 0 views

Following a UFC 190 defeat against Demian Maia that snapped his seven-fight winning streak, welterweight contender Neil Magny will waste no time trying to start a new one, as he faces Brazil's read news >>

Five Bouts Confirmed for UFC Fight Night: Poirier vs. Duffy Fight Card

  • 23 days ago
  • 4 views

On Saturday, October 24 UFC will make its highly anticipated return to Dublin, Ireland and the fight card is beginning to take shape with five newly added bouts. read news >>

Jose Aldo UFC 190 media scrum

  • 26 days ago
  • 15 views

RIO DE JANEIRO -- Jose Aldo discusses returning to training following a rib injury, fighting Conor McGregor at the Dallas Cowboys stadium, why he thinks T.J. Dillashaw shouldn’t call him out, his rel read news >>

The MMA Hour - 293 - Alex Davis

  • 28 days ago
  • 0 views

Alex Davis, the manager of Rousimar Palhares, discusses his fighter's punishment. read news >>

Ronda Rousey would be 'close' to making Floyd Mayweather's money in 50 fights

  • 28 days ago
  • 14 views

UFC women's star Ronda Rousey discusses the pay gap between herself and Floyd Mayweather. 'Money' Mayweather is an apt nickname for the boxing legend. The undefeated boxer earned a staggering $180 mi read news >>