UFC’s “Countdown” special aired for the first time this week, hyping Saturday’s UFC 136: Edgar vs. Maynard III card. On the show, UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and No. 1 challenger Gray Maynard each watched their UFC 125 draw and gave commentary on the bout.
Edgar, who entered as the champion, survived a brutal first round that saw him knocked down and nearly out, as “The Bully” seemed to be well on his way to securing the title. But, “The Answer” did just that, finding a way to not only rebound, but damage Maynard.
Both fighters had the bout 1-1 after two rounds of intense action, but things began to change in the third, as both believed they did enough to win the five-minute exchange.
“His kicks, he doesn’t commit on them,” said Maynard on the show (thanks to MMA Mania for transcribing). “You know? It’s a foot. It’s not like he’s really trying to hurt you. It’s for points, I think.”
Edgar thought those kicks and his attempt at a submission were enough, saying, “I thought I did enough in the stand-up portion. I also finished (the round) with a guillotine. I think I did enough to win that round.”
With each fighters believing they were up a round on the other, both agreed that the fourth went to Edgar, citing it as his best round of the contest. In the fifth, however, opinions differ once again.
“For me, it didn’t feel like he was trying to secure this last round,” Maynard said. “I had to chase him down, chase him down, chase him down.”
The champion didn’t see it the same, saying, “In the last 30 seconds, we were really swinging for the fences, both of us…I think if you look at CompuStrike, I landed more strikes than him. So, uh, I get the nod.”
Each fighter gave themselves a 48-46 victory in the bout. Saturday night they will get the chance to prove that as they step inside the Toyota Center in Houston for a third time. Maynard won their first meeting in 2008 by decision.