Maia is coming off a split decision win over Jorge Masvidal at UFC 211 this past Saturday, which extended his winning streak to seven. As a result, Maia has finally been told he will challenge Woodley for the welterweight belt.
It’s not known yet when or where the title fight will happen. But, since Maia is from Brazil, and because he’s one of the best Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu practitioners on the planet, clearly, having the bout there would be a good way to go. From the UFC’s perspective of course.
Woodley was a guest on “The MMA Hour” this week, and while discussing the prospect of fighting Maia in Brazil, the champ said this (quote via MMA Mania):
“You want me to fight this guy, tell me where’s he’s marketable at, Brazil? If you offer me a fight against Demian Maia in Brazil, do not come to me for less than seven figures to show,” said Woodley.
“I am not traveling to another country, different time zone, whatever, to fight him in his own element. I’m the champion. Outside of that, International Fight Week is a good week. The fight with Jon Jones and ‘DC’ is a good week, too.”
Now, the chances of the UFC tabling that amount of cash for Woodley, as a means of facilitating a fight in Brazil are slim. Maia is a big deal in Brazil, and amongst hardcore fans, particularly those who roll from time-to-time, but he’s not a huge PPV draw. So, one would think this fight will wind up in a U.S. city.
International Fight Week sounds good in early July, but does Maia want to have that quick of a turn around?