USA Today/BE Consensus Rankings. The PPV begins at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT.the
If you are a fan of fights mixing history with the highest level of skill, this is the fight for you. Edgar and Maynard have, over the course of two previous fights, demonstrated just how evenly matched they are in every aspect of the game. They first met in 2008 as two undefeated prospects. It was a much closer fight than the 30-27 scorecards would indicate, but Maynard was able to use his wrestling to control Edgar enough for the win. After that loss, neither man would lose again leading into the rematch earlier this year, this time for Edgar's title. That fight is an all time classic with Edgar surviving a brutal first round to drag it back to a draw and retain his belt. The third fight was planned for earlier this year, but was delayed due to injury. We finally get it this weekend.
How do these two stack up?
Edgar: 29 years old | 5'6" | 72" reach
Maynard: 32 years old | 5'8" | 70" reach
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
As is the theme with these two, Edgar and Maynard come to this fight through very similar paths. Frankie Edgar came into the UFC with a strong wrestling pedigree. He immediately made a splash by winning a spectacular debut fight against Tyson Griffin in the early days of the resurgent Lightweight division. He won 3 straight before the first Maynard loss, where his smaller size cost him. He turned that size into an advantage with speed, conditioning, and boxing, winning 3 in a row before challenging and upsetting B.J. Penn for the Lightweight title. This is his third title defense.
Like Edgar, Gray Maynard came in as a strong wrestler with high hopes for success in the UFC. A cast member of season 5 of The Ultimate Fighter, Maynard does have one unofficial loss on his record, as he was defeated by Nate Diaz during the show. After a fluke No Contest in his UFC debut, Maynard rattled off 8 straight wins, including Edgar, Diaz, Kenny Florian, and Jim Miller. He is convinced that he won the second fight, and comes into this fight determined to claim his belt.
Why should you care?
Seriously, how can you not? The second fight was amazing, full of skill and drama between two supremely evenly matched fighters. Add in the rivalry of this being the third fight, and you have a real classic brewing here. I can't wait.
More Bloody Elbow coverage of UFC 136 after the jump.