UFC Fight Night: Maia vs. LaFlare (UFC Fight Night 62) was live from the Ginásio do Maracanãzinho in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on March 21, 2015.
Due to many injuries, the card was much weaker than anticipated. The original main event was supposed to be a pivotal bout in the bantamweight division as ‘The California Kid’ Urijah Faber was set to take on the fighter with the divisions longest win streak in Raphael Assunção. An injury forced Assunção out of the match-up and ultimately resulted in Faber being removed from the card. The new main event was now a match-up between two ranked welterweights as the undefeated Ryan LaFlare took on the former middleweight title challenger Demian Maia.
Just like at every event, some fighters took a big step forward and others were knocked down a peg in their MMA careers. With that being said, check out who our biggest winners and losers are from UFC Fight Night 62 below.
The former middleweight title challenger Demian Maia was set to take on the up-and-coming and undefeated Ryan LaFlare at UFC Fight Night 62. Although completely exhausted by the final round, Maia put on an absolute grappling clinic and dominated the first four rounds on his way to a unanimous decision win. Maia looked truly spectacular and showed as to why he is still one of the best welterweights in the UFC. Maia who is already the #7 ranked guy in the division now has back-to-back wins and still has a lot left in the tank for a guy who is 37-years-old and has 20 UFC fights. Despite the last round, it was one of his best performances in the last few years and it should not go overlooked at how dominant this performance was.
Amanda Nunes was looking to bounce back from her loss to Cat Zingano at UFC Fight Night 62 against Shayna Baszler. Nunes looked spectacular and barely got touched. ‘The Lioness’ made quick work of the 24-fight veteran and made a statement in doing so. Nunes once again proved why she might be a future title challenger in the division as she improved her UFC record to 3-1. The 26-year-old will likely get a high profile fight within the division in her next fight and could just be a couple more wins away from challenging for the title as the division is very much in need of new contenders.
‘The Queen of Spades’ has had a rough go of it as of late. Baszler’s stint on the 20th season of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ was a very disappointing one as she was eliminated in her very first fight against the eventual season winner Julianna Peña. Then after the season ended, injuries prolonged her UFC debut for multiple months. She then went on to lose her debut in lopsided fashion against Bethe Correia. Finally, at UFC Fight Night 62 she put on another disappointing performance against Amanda Nunes as she was stopped via TKO at 1:56 of Round 1. The 34-year-old has been fighting longer than just about everyone in the women’s division and it is showing. Baszler has just one win since 2010 and her UFC future is very much in doubt.
Referee Eduardo Herdy had a really tough night. It was truly terrible officiating. Herdy was the referee in the Christos Giagos vs. Jorge de Oliveira fight and stopped the fight later than it should have been as Giagos submitted de Oliveira at 3:12 of Round 1. The worst was yet to come though. In the Leandro Silva vs. Drew Dober fight, Silva had Dober in a guillotine and Herdy stopped the fight. Not only did Dober not tap or go out, he escaped the submission just as Herdy stepped in. Herdy was probably worried of messing up and stopping the fight too late like he did earlier in the night, but he made an even worse mistake as Dober was nowhere near close to tapping. Herdy should face some sort of discipline after what was arguably the worst stoppage in UFC history.