‘End of an era’: Dana White likely to see off Demian Maia after 263
The grappling artist showcased his skills at best against Belal Muhammad, but fell short on points. The judges ruled Muhammad the winner of the three-round welterweight bout.
The way Maia (28-11) pressured Muhammad in the first round showed that he’s still got it, but White feels his time is done. Addressing a post-event presser, the UFC president hailed Maia’s wrestling skills in his 15-year-long ride with the organization.
“I think that was his last fight. It was the last fight on his deal. He’s been so good at getting in there, securing the takedown, getting on top of people and just strangling them or grabbing something and twisting it until you quit, and he couldn’t get it done tonight,” White said.
“He’s [43 years old], he’s a great guy, he’s had a great career, and yes, I would say that’s probably it.”
Before UFC 263, Maia himself had hinted at hanging his gloves if the fight doesn’t go his way.
“I’m near the end, and it could be the last fight, but, you know, I’ve been performing so well in training camp, and I’ve been feeling so well that I could do one more, couple more – most likely one more after that,” he told MMA Junkie.
The Brazilian star fell one victory short of equalling Donald Cerrone’s record for most wins in the UFC.