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UFC welterweight Ryan LaFlare eyeing fight with Demian Maia

Undefeated welterweight Ryan LaFlare aims for an early 2015 fight with former middleweight and welterweight contender Demian Maia.

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Ryan LaFlare is 10-0 overall and 4-0 in the UFC, with wins over Santiago Ponzinibbio, Ben Alloway, Court McGee, and John Howard. An injury prevented him from facing Gunnar Nelson back in July, and it ultimately sidelined him for the rest of 2014. In an interview with MMA Fighting, LaFlare expressed interest in taking on Demian Maia once the New Yorker is cleared to compete:

"I'm doing everything except sparring and wrestling," he said. "I see the doctor in January and hopefully [I'll] get the great light.

While he won't be offered a fight until he is medically cleared (or close to), LaFlare already has an opponent in mind: Demian Maia. Maia was recently medically cleared to resume training after developing a bone infection in his shoulder, according to his manager Eduardo Alonso.

"I would love that fight," he said.

Maia (19-6) last fought in May, winning a unanimous decision over Alexander Yakovlev in Brazil. Prior to that, the 37-year-old had dropped consecutive fights to Jake Shields and Rory MacDonald.

It's certainly not a bad suggestion by LaFlare, who is ranked 15th, while Maia is ranked 8th. This potential match-up provides plenty of upside for LaFlare, who could make his way into the top 10 should he face and defeat Maia.