Maia at the weigh-ins for UFC 131
Demian Augusto Maia Baptista|
November 6, 1977
São Paulo, Brazil
|Height||6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)|
|Weight||170 lb (77 kg; 12 st 2 lb)|
|Reach||72.0 in (183 cm)|
|Style||Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Boxing|
|Team||Demian Maia Jiu-Jitsu|
|Rank||4th degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Fábio Gurgel|
|Years active||2001, 2005 – present (MMA)|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Demian Augusto Maia Baptista (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈdemiɐ̃ ˈmajɐ] (born November 6, 1977) is a Brazilian mixed martial artist and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioner. He currently fights as a welterweight for the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Maia is regarded as one of the greatest grapplers in MMA history. As of July 26, 2018, he is #7 in the official UFC welterweight rankings.
- 1 Background
- 2 Mixed martial arts career
- 3 Fighting style
- 4 Personal life
- 5 Brazilian jiu-jitsu lineage
- 6 Championships and achievements
- 7 Mixed martial arts record
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
Born in São Paulo, Brazil, Maia trained in Judo as a child. He began at the age of four and trained until he was six. When he became a teenager, he also began studying Kung Fu and Karate. By age nineteen, Maia was introduced to Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu by his cousin. After four years and seven months, Demian received his black belt. Demian Maia finished college and graduated with a degree in Journalism. He is currently a fourth degree black belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and has won several major tournaments under Team Brasa.
He won the 77–87 kg weight division at the 2007 ADCC Submission Wrestling World Championship, defeating Yushin Okami, Rafael Lovato, and Tarsis Humphres before armbarring Flavio Almeida in the finals. He also won the 2007 Super Challenge under 83 kg belt, defeating Vitelmo Kubis Bandeira by rear naked choke and Gustavo Machado by a judges decision before going on to defeat Fabio Negao by guillotine choke in the finals. On the heels of his ADCC Championship in 2007, Maia released an instructional DVD series titled The Science of Jiu Jitsu I & II in collaboration with the World Martial Arts company.
Maia's grappling prowess is so highly regarded among MMA fighters that noted heavyweight submission artist and fellow BJJ black belt Frank Mir hired him as his head jiu-jitsu coach prior to his UFC 100 title fight with Brock Lesnar. Mir credits Maia with bringing Mir's jiu-jitsu skills to different levels, saying "I thought I was actually good at it until I started rolling with him."
Maia has also defeated top-ranked UFC middleweight and multiple-time Mundial champion Ronaldo "Jacaré" Souza, as well as former UFC heavyweight title challenger and Mundial champion Gabriel Gonzaga twice in grappling competition.
Mixed martial arts career
On September 21, 2001, fought against Raul Sosa at Tormenta en el Ring in Caracas, Venezuela. Maia defeated Sosa by TKO in just 48 seconds to win his MMA debut. After a four year layoff, he returned to submit Lukasz Chewlicki by armbar at The Cage Vol. 4 – Redemption. Maia next competed at Super Challenge 1, earning three victories in one night to be crowned the 2007 Super Challenge Champion in the under-83 kg division. In 2007, he competed in GFC – Evolution against Ryan Stout. Early in the first round, Stout's shoulder popped out of its socket after Maia reversing him into a mount, causing a stoppage due to injury.
Ultimate Fighting Championship
It was reported on August 7, 2007, that Maia had signed a contract with the UFC. He was originally matched against veteran Marvin Eastman, but Eastman pulled out due to eye surgery. Ryan Jensen, who trained with Team Quest, was named as his replacement. The preliminary bout took place on October 20 at UFC 77 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Maia won by rear naked choke in the first round and was awarded the Submission of the Night award, which paid him an extra $40,000.
Maia next fought TUF 3 finalist Ed Herman, another Team Quest fighter, at UFC 83 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada on April 19, 2008. Maia defeated Herman by technical submission due to a mounted triangle choke at 2:27 of the second round. He again earned Submission of the Night honors for the victory, which paid him $75,000.
Maia's third fight was at UFC 87 where he took on fellow Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Jason MacDonald. Both fighters entered the cage having won back-to-back Submission of the Night honors in the UFC. Maia went on to defeat MacDonald by rear naked choke at 2:44 of the third round, earning $60,000 for another Submission of the Night bonus. With this award he became the first UFC fighter to earn three consecutive Submissions of the Night awards. His four consecutive dominating submissions in the UFC have quickly brought his skills to the forefront as possibly being the best pure grappler in the UFC.
Instead, Maia would take on WEC standout and future UFC middleweight title contender Chael Sonnen in London, England at UFC 95 on February 21, 2009. During the match, Maia tossed Sonnen over his head using a lateral drop takedown, taking Sonnen to the ground, where Maia immediately achieved mount. Maia then transitioned to a triangle choke, forcing Sonnen to tap at 2:24 of the first round. Maia's next opponent was former title contender Nate Marquardt at UFC 102 on August 29. During an exchange of strikes, Maia was knocked out by a straight right hand from Marquardt 21 seconds into the fight, resulting in his first career loss.
Middleweight Championship fight
After Vitor Belfort had to pull out of his upcoming match with UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva at UFC 112 due to a shoulder injury suffered in training, Maia was selected to fill the spot and take Silva on for the belt in what would be the UFC's first ever open-air event in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.
In the first two rounds, Silva appeared to mock his opponent, while also executing quick, precise striking. In the third round, however, Silva's tempo seemed to change and looked to Maia to be the aggressor of the fight while he largely circled and taunted his opponent. In the fifth round, Silva's lack of action prompted referee Dan Miragliotta to warn Silva for his conduct and the crowd began to side with Maia. After 5 rounds, Silva was declared the winner via unanimous decision.
Silva was criticised for his performance, with Dana White saying that it was the most embarrassed he has ever been since becoming UFC president. Midway through the fourth round, White walked away and gave the championship belt to Silva's manager, Ed Soares, as he was so annoyed that he did not want to place the belt around Silva's waist personally. It was also claimed that Silva verbally insulted Maia during the fight.
After the Title Fight
Maia was then expected to fight Alan Belcher on September 15, 2010, at UFC Fight Night 22. However, on August 1, 2010, Belcher withdrew from the fight after undergoing emergency eye surgery for a detached retina. Belcher stated on his Twitter account that he started to lose the vision in his right eye while in Brazil. As a result, Maia was also pulled from the event and faced Mario Miranda on August 28, 2010, at UFC 118. Maia defeated Mario Miranda via unanimous decision (30–27, 30–27, 30–27).
Maia was expected to face Michael Bisping on January 28, 2012, at UFC on Fox 2. However, Bisping replaced an injured Mark Muñoz on the same card against Chael Sonnen, while Maia faced undefeated Chris Weidman at the event. Weidman defeated Maia via unanimous decision. The fight was initially announced as a split decision but the judges actually scored it as a unanimous decision, clarified by UFC President Dana White in a tweet.
Drop to welterweight
After deciding to drop to the 170 pound division, Maia faced Dong Hyun Kim in a welterweight bout on July 7, 2012, at UFC 148. The bout was stopped in forty-seven seconds by referee Mario Yamasaki, after Maia took Kim down and finished him with strikes from the mounted position. UFC commentator Joe Rogan said that Kim had broken a rib, but it was later revealed that he suffered a major muscle spasm.
Maia next faced Jon Fitch on February 2, 2013, at UFC 156. He dominated the former title challenger for all three rounds, earning a lopsided unanimous decision victory with all three judges scoring the fight 30–27. Maia credited B.J. Penn and his gameplan against Fitch at UFC 127, which Maia admitted he emulated to earn his victory.
For his fourth fight at welterweight, Maia faced Jake Shields on October 9, 2013, at UFC Fight Night 29. As expected, the contest between the two decorated jiu-jitsu practitioners took place mostly on the ground with Maia losing a controversial split decision.
Maia faced Rory MacDonald at UFC 170 in Las Vegas, Nevada, on February 22, 2014. He lost the fight via unanimous decision. Despite the loss, the bout won Maia his first Fight of the Night bonus award.
Maia was expected to face Mike Pierce on May 31, 2014, at The Ultimate Fighter Brazil 3 Finale. However Pierce had to pull out of the fight due to a broken hand. Pierce was replaced by UFC newcomer Alexander Yakovlev. Maia won the fight via unanimous decision.
Maia was expected to face Mike Pyle on August 23, 2014, at UFC Fight Night 49. However he later came down with a staph infection and was forced to pull out of the bout. It was later revealed that Maia's infection had spread to the bone leading to osteomyelitis in his right clavicle.
Maia was briefly linked to a fight with Gunnar Nelson on October 24, 2015, at UFC Fight Night 76, but the bout did not materialize for that event as Maia was sidelined with a staph infection on his left leg. The bout eventually took place on December 12, 2015, at UFC 194. Maia won the one-sided fight via unanimous decision.
Welterweight Title Fight and beyond
After amassing a seven-fight win streak at welterweight, Maia faced Welterweight champion Tyron Woodley on July 29, 2017, in the co-main event at UFC 214. He lost the fight via unanimous decision.
Maia's fighting style is built around his exceptional abilities on the ground, where he has been able to dominate his opponents. He, together with Ronaldo Souza has been called the best ground-fighter in the UFC on multiple occasions. Maia uses double and single leg takedowns as well as trips to advance to a dominant position and soften his opponent up with ground and pound, waiting for an opening for a submission. On the ground, Maia prefers to take the back mount, where he will look for a rear naked choke. In bottom position, Maia uses single legs to sweep almost exclusively, and was able to sweep Gunnar Nelson repeatedly with his single leg. Maia is also confident enough in his striking to close the distance and get in on takedowns.
Maia's mother is of Russian ancestry. He has a wife named Renata, who works for a Brazilian magazine. Maia listed UFC Hall of Famer Royce Gracie as his inspiration to begin an MMA career, but lists Royce's brother Rickson Gracie as his primary hero. Maia speaks Portuguese, Spanish and English.
Brazilian jiu-jitsu lineage
Championships and achievements
- ADCC World Submission Wrestling Championships
- Pan American Championships
- CBJJ World Championships
- 2001 Brown Belt Medio-Pesado: 2nd Place
- 2000 Purple Belt Medio-Pesado: 1st Place
- 1999 Blue Belt Medio: 2nd Place
- CBJJ Brazilian Championships
- 2006 Black Belt Absolute: 2nd Place & Black Belt Meio-Pesado: 3rd Place
- 2002 Brown Belt Medio-Pesado: 3rd Place
- 2001 Brown Belt Medio-Pesado: 1st Place & Brown Belt Medio-Pesado: 3rd Place
- CBJJ Brazilian Team Championships
- 2003 Brown/Black Pesada: Master, 1st Place
- 2002 Brown/Black Pesada: Alliance, 2nd Place
- 2001 Brown/Black Pesada: Alliance, 1st Place
- 2000 Purple Belt Pesada: Alliance, 1st Place
- CBJJO Copa Del Mundo (World Cup)
- 2005 −85 kg Black Belt: 1st Place
- 2003 Black Belt Meio-Pesado: 3rd Place & Black Belt Absolute: 1st Place
- 2002 Black Belt Meio-Pesado: 1st Place & Black Belt Absolute: 2nd Place
Mixed martial arts
- Ultimate Fighting Championship
- Super Challenge
- Super Challenge Tournament 182.6 lbs/83 kg (Winner)
- FIGHT! Magazine
- Newcomer of the Year (2008) 
- 2015 Comeback Fighter of the Year
Mixed martial arts record
|Professional record breakdown|
|34 matches||25 wins||9 losses|
|Loss||25–9||Kamaru Usman||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. Usman||May 19, 2018||5||5:00||Santiago, Chile|
|Loss||25–8||Colby Covington||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Brunson vs. Machida||October 28, 2017||3||5:00||São Paulo, Brazil|
|Loss||25–7||Tyron Woodley||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 214||July 29, 2017||5||5:00||Anaheim, California, United States||For the UFC Welterweight Championship.|
|Win||25–6||Jorge Masvidal||Decision (split)||UFC 211||May 13, 2017||3||5:00||Dallas, Texas, United States|
|Win||24–6||Carlos Condit||Submission (rear-naked choke)||UFC on Fox: Maia vs. Condit||August 27, 2016||1||1:52||Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||23–6||Matt Brown||Submission (rear-naked choke)||UFC 198||May 14, 2016||3||4:31||Curitiba, Brazil|
|Win||22–6||Gunnar Nelson||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 194||December 12, 2015||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||21–6||Neil Magny||Submission (rear-naked choke)||UFC 190||August 1, 2015||2||2:52||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil||Performance of the Night.|
|Win||20–6||Ryan LaFlare||Decision (unanimous)||UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. LaFlare||March 21, 2015||5||5:00||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
|Win||19–6||Alexander Yakovlev||Decision (unanimous)||The Ultimate Fighter Brazil 3 Finale: Miocic vs. Maldonado||May 31, 2014||3||5:00||São Paulo, Brazil|
|Loss||18–6||Rory MacDonald||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 170||February 22, 2014||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Fight of the Night.|
|Loss||18–5||Jake Shields||Decision (split)||UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. Shields||October 9, 2013||5||5:00||Barueri, Brazil|
|Win||18–4||Jon Fitch||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 156||February 2, 2013||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||17–4||Rick Story||Submission (neck crank)||UFC 153||October 13, 2012||1||2:30||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
|Win||16–4||Dong Hyun Kim||TKO (muscle spasm)||UFC 148||July 7, 2012||1||0:47||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Welterweight debut.|
|Loss||15–4||Chris Weidman||Decision (unanimous)||UFC on Fox: Evans vs. Davis||January 28, 2012||3||5:00||Chicago, Illinois, United States|
|Win||15–3||Jorge Santiago||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 136||October 8, 2011||3||5:00||Houston, Texas, United States|
|Loss||14–3||Mark Muñoz||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 131||June 11, 2011||3||5:00||Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada|
|Win||14–2||Kendall Grove||Decision (unanimous)||The Ultimate Fighter: Team GSP vs. Team Koscheck Finale||December 4, 2010||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||13–2||Mario Miranda||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 118||August 28, 2010||3||5:00||Boston, Massachusetts, United States|
|Loss||12–2||Anderson Silva||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 112||April 10, 2010||5||5:00||Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates||For the UFC Middleweight Championship.|
|Win||12–1||Dan Miller||Decision (unanimous)||UFC 109||February 6, 2010||3||5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Loss||11–1||Nate Marquardt||KO (punch)||UFC 102||August 29, 2009||1||0:21||Portland, Oregon, United States|
|Win||11–0||Chael Sonnen||Submission (triangle choke)||UFC 95||February 21, 2009||1||2:37||London, England||Submission of the Night.|
|Win||10–0||Nate Quarry||Submission (rear-naked choke)||UFC 91||November 15, 2008||1||2:13||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States|
|Win||9–0||Jason MacDonald||Submission (rear-naked choke)||UFC 87||August 9, 2008||3||2:44||Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States||Submission of the Night.|
|Win||8–0||Ed Herman||Technical Submission (mounted triangle choke)||UFC 83||April 19, 2008||2||2:27||Montreal, Quebec, Canada||Submission of the Night.|
|Win||7–0||Ryan Jensen||Submission (rear-naked choke)||UFC 77||October 20, 2007||1||2:40||Cincinnati, Ohio, United States||Submission of the Night.|
|Win||6–0||Ryan Stout||TKO (shoulder injury)||GFC: Evolution||May 19, 2007||1||1:54||Columbus, Ohio, United States|
|Win||5–0||Fabio Nascimento||Submission (guillotine choke)||Super Challenge 1||October 7, 2006||1||0:35||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil||Won the Super Challenge (83 kg) Tournament.|
|Win||4–0||Gustavo Machado||Decision (unanimous)||Super Challenge 1||October 7, 2006||2||5:00||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
|Win||3–0||Vitelmo Bandeira||Submission (rear-naked choke)||Super Challenge 1||October 7, 2006||1||3:30||Rio de Janeiro, Brazil|
|Win||2–0||Łukasz Chlewicki||Submission (armbar)||The Cage Vol. 4 - Redemption||December 3, 2005||1||4:22||Helsinki, Finland|
|Win||1–0||Raul Sosa||TKO (punches)||Tormenta en el Ring||September 21, 2001||1||0:48||Caracas, Venezuela|
- List of current UFC fighters
- List of male mixed martial artists
- List of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioners
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