Florian Ready to Shut Up Cocky Maynard
(MMAWeekly) If Gray Maynard is on a run towards the UFC lightweight title, Kenny Florian plans on tripping him up just before he reaches the finish line.
As he prepares for his UFC 118 showdown with Maynard in his hometown of Boston, the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt says that he’s starting to hear a little bit too much talk from his opponent, and not enough action to back up the statements he’s making.
Trash talk is a funny thing in MMA, because if someone talks the talk, eventually someone is going to force him to walk the walk.
“One thing that needs to be made clear is Gray’s the one who asked for this fight. He’s the one that called out the winner of our fight,” Florian said about his fight with Takanori Gomi when appearing on MMAWeekly Radio.
“He was pretty quiet as far as wanting to get the belt at first, seems like he didn’t want to fight B.J. or Frankie or whatever, and then all of a sudden when Frankie won it seems like he started to get real cocky, or started trying to make a name for himself. I don’t know, it seems like he got cocky over night, all of a sudden.”
Maynard does hold the only win over current lightweight champion Frankie Edgar in his career. Florian thinks it may have been the prospect of a rematch with the New Jersey fighter that gave him his extra bravado heading into their fight. Bravado or not, Florian says Maynard doesn’t really have a leg to stand on when it comes to comparing fight records.
“It’s motivating for me. I don’t see any reason for him to be cocky,” said Florian. “He’s had decisions over guys. He hasn’t finished anyone of note. He’s squeaking by on these decisions, yet he’s talking like he’s already a world champion.
“I don’t really understand where the cockiness is coming from. In those decisions he had against Roger Huerta, I thought he probably won it, against Nate Diaz, he barely won it, but I could have seen it going the other way. So these are fights to me, I don’t think he was very impressive.”
The other big problem that Florian has with Maynard is the former “Ultimate Fighter” competitor somehow looking past him. That’s something he takes very, very seriously. As a matter of fact, Florian is happy to shut him up on Aug. 28 and then take the title shot that he covets so much.
“Maybe it’s because he feels obviously he has a win over Frankie, but it just seems like he got very verbal and very cocky, so I’m looking forward to going out there and fighting him. I think he’s fought tough guys, but he hasn’t fought anybody like me. I think he’s looking past me. I think he thinks he’s already going to fight for the title or he’s already won the title,” Florian stated.
“I’m looking forward to it. One of my favorite things to do is spoiling a party, so I’m looking forward to doing that.”
Every fighter at one time or another has faced an opponent who was a talker before the match ever started, and Florian believes that the usually soft-spoken Maynard may be talking himself up to gain the confidence that he belongs among the best lightweights in the world.
“Sometimes we try to talk to ourselves and make us believe that we’re something that we’re not. That’s what I call believing the hype, and believing your own hype,” said Florian.
“I fell victim to it, and you live in this kind of a non-realistic world. You start believing what people are telling you, you start walking around with a chip on your shoulder, and maybe you feel you don’t get the respect. So you start talking things up and you try to make things bigger, and convince yourself ‘oh I’ve faced a guy like this before, I’m undefeated, and no one’s done anything to me before.’
“Maybe that is the case, maybe he is that confident, but when I see a change in human behavior like that, going from being quiet to being outspoken and saying these cocky things, I think it’s a matter of him trying to get him to believe a certain thing, more than him really believing it.”
Believe it or not, Maynard will try to back up everything he’s said when he faces Florian in his hometown of Boston at UFC 118.
Posted on Saturday, August 21st, 2010 in Updates.
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