If you watched tonight’s UFC 136 main event and were not at least somewhat inspired, you may need to check your pulse. Frankie Edgar put on another performance that will live long in the annals of MMA, closing out his three-fight series with Gray Maynard in dramatic fashion.
Their rubber match somewhat eerily started the same way that their rematch did, with Gray Maynard putting the champion in dire straits with his heavy hands. In what seemed to be a bad sign of things to come for the champion, Maynard repeatedly rocked Edgar, but took his time looking for the finish, whereas last time around he gassed himself out trying to put the champ away. Again, Edgar managed to hang tough through Maynard’s onslaught and make it to the second round, making it impossible to question that he has the heart of a lion.
In the second round, Maynard backed off and let Edgar recover, which he did in fairly short order. As the champ began to find his rhythm, Maynard grew more flustered. In the third round, Edgar had his legs back under him, implementing his vaunted footwork and lighting-quick boxing, mixed with attempted takedowns to throw Maynard off. It probably made Dana White sweat to think that this bout could possibly turn out as a draw again, but come the fourth round, Edgar did what he said he would and put a stamp on his win.
The Answer shot for the takedown, was stuffed and touched Maynard with an uppercut he didn’t see coming. The punch put him shaky legs and Edgar swarmed, pounding away at him until Maynard was unconscious, face-first on the mat.
Edgar improves to 14-1-1 with the victory, makes the third successful defense of his title and likely cements his place in the UFC Hall of Fame. The undersized New Jersey native put on a performance to be proud of and one that will no doubt define his legacy.
Maynard falls to 10-1-1 (1) in defeat.