The anticipation for the Welterweight title fight between Demian Maia and Tyron Woodley has everyone excited. The good match of skills, as perceived by most but not by wrestling boy wonder Ben Askren.
“The thing is, I don’t think it’s going to hit the floor,” Askren told BJ Penn Radio. “That’s the thing about it. You know, Demian Maia’s takedowns are… they’re basic. The one thing he does well is he really sticks with it. But you look at his recent run of success, and he hasn’t really had to fight any high-level wrestlers. And even Jorge Masvidal, – I don’t want to say [he has] no wrestling background, I’m not 100% sure – I don’t think he has any wrestling background, was able to stop some of the takedowns, you know? And so, when you look at Tyron Woodley who has a very strong wrestling background, I just don’t see a scenario in which Demian Maia is able to get Tyron on the ground.”
“Even in those positions, Tyron’s really good in those positions,” Askren explained. “So even if Demian gets past the first and second-level defense, the movement and the sprawl… say he even gets to the leg and gets to a decent position, I still feel like even from there, or even from a body lock, he’s not going to get the takedown. Even if you were to ask me before I was working with him, I would have said ‘Demian’s going to have a hard time getting a takedown.’ Now I can’t foresee a scenario in which Demian gets a takedown.”
Truth be told if Maia can’t take Woodley to the ground his chance of winning just got much slimmer.
UFC 214 will be headlined with Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier on July 29th in California. On the same card are
145 lbs.: Cris Cyborg vs Tonya Evinger for vacant women’s Featherweight title
145 lbs.: Dooho Choi vs. Andre Fili
205 lbs.: Jimi Manuwa vs. Volkan Oezdemir
140 lbs.: Renan Barao vs. Aljamain Sterling
115 lbs.: Alexandra Albu vs. Kailin Curran
155 lbs.: Josh Burkman vs. Drew Dober
265 lbs.: Dmitrii Smoliakov vs. Adam Wieczorkowski
125 lbs.: Jarred Brooks vs. Eric Shelton
145 lbs.: Ricardo Lamas vs. Jason Knight
145 lbs.: Renato Moicano vs. Brian Ortega
155 lbs.: Sage Northcutt vs. John Makdessi