EXCLUSIVE: Hatsu Hioki Responds to Fan Criticism of Clay Guida

January 29, 2013
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Hatsu Hioki and Clay Guida at UFC on Fox 6At the recent UFC on Fox 6 event, one of the most hotly contested bouts of the evening came between Hatsu Hioki and Clay Guida.

It appeared in the fight that Hioki managed to work significantly to land damage and finish the fight from the bottom position, yet the judges ruled the fight in Guida’s favor via split decision (29-28, 30-27, 29-28).

Shortly after the fight, Hioki spoke to MMAWeekly.com about the loss. And while he gave all credit to his opponent for the win, comments made by readers regarding Guida’s perceived stall tactics has Hioki wishing to further express his feelings about the bout.

Below is the full, unedited statement MMAWeekly.com received from Hioki:

I hear a lot of people criticizing Guida’s strategy to lie on top; however, it was ultimately my lack of skills to get back on (to my) feet, stop these takedowns and submit an opponent who was staying tight while being on top to put myself on the losing end. I say this again: Guida won the fight fair and square. He was better than me at that night.

I have respected him before and I respect him more now.

I spent a lot of time to develop takedown defense, and I think my takedown defense skill got better than before, but just fell short on Guida. That’s the truth, but I can say that my takedown defense is a lot better than before because we were into prepping for him takedowns. If it weren’t for this fight prep, my takedown defense would have been unchanged and undeveloped, so I would like to (say) thank you (to) him for being a great wrestler.

All that said, I would like to thank all the support from fans who have watched the fight and Guida-san for the competitive match.

Thank you very much,
Hatsu Hioki

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  • Nicholas Picholas

    Hat’s off to Hatsu. Even though I felt he won he took the high road. Fantastic answer.

  • bajafox

    Gracious in defeat.

    Too bad Guida probably gloated about winning the way he did

  • RonnieV

    Guida needs to stay at 145, and return to his Diego Sanchez brawling days. His lay & pray routine the past few years has taken him off the main card & lost him his fan base. He’s a Top 10 Lightweight, but when he faces a top tier lightweight he fights very conservative. Guida has a very good submission game, he needs to use it more. He has no business boxing with anyone, because he has the reach of T-Rex, and always gets bloodied with jabs. I hope he rebounds, it’s tough not to like him.

    • Mark McDowall

      Unfortunately he is another product of the Greg Jackson “fight not to loose, don’t fight to win” mentality.

      • Guest

        “lose” = not winning
        “loose” = not tight

      • 1stDegreeBern

        “loose” = not tight
        “lose” = the word you wanted

      • b-soc

        It is the better road to take as it gaurantees employment and keeps food on the table for these fighters. Not everyone can be Leonard Garcia (Jackson Fighter for the record), but unfortunately he will end up talking like Rocky at the end of his career. UFC competition is getting better and better as fighters are being bread starting at age 12. I can’t fault these guys. They are winning.

        • Mark McDowall

          I agree. Winning is the name of the game. But Guida has something like 18 or so fights in the UFC. Not 1 title fight. Maybe its just a different mentality…but why fight if your just going to do just enough to win. The reason guys like Sonnen are getting big fights all the time is because he puts butts in seats and sells PPV’s. Guida has fallen so far down the ladder that he is on a prelim card. He keeps up with the lay and pray fighting style…he will be luck if he doesn’t get relegated to FaceBook…if he continues his employment at all!!

        • Gary Fredericks

          If that’s what you call winning, I predict MMA to be dead again in a couple more years. Jackson’s athletes, while effective to make the number in the win column go up, does nothing to draw in new fans or please those that have been around. Guida went from being a fun guy to watch to somebody I could really not care less to see anymore….regardless of the Hioki fight.

          • Crashman

            Like someone said before, its called fighting smarter, yea he could run in and swing for the fences and fight 2 more times or fight smarter, use his strength and ground and pound and fight 15 more times. Comments like Gary’s are what made everyone think this was a no brainer sport, but just because he’s not “knocking everyone out” doesnt mean he’s not tough or a fighter.

          • Gary Fredericks

            The proof is in the unemployment line Crashman. Why are guys like Leo Garcia and Dan Hardy still in the UFC while having pretty bad losing streaks while other guys sent to the bread line for 1+ boring fights? It’s because guys like Hardy and Garcia come to fight and fight to finish…not just fight to win. Case in point, Tim Sylvia. Dude had a couple runs with the title and fought to win. Dana didn’t even let him shower after the Couture figtht before he was fired LOL. I don’t make the rules for the UFC, but I do tune in to every TV card as well as buy PPV’s and so do millions of other fans….especially NEW fans. Without gaining new fans, MMA would never had come out of the dark days of the UFC’s SEG ownership.

  • Derek Lemaster

    Guida reminds me of Arturo Gatti. Both were huge fan favorites that everybody loved to watch, then coaches Buddy McGurt and Greg Jackson ruined it and trained these beasts to be technical and win on points. Disgusting! Guida shouldve been FIRED after the Maynard fight! I miss the yellow card system from Pride. Dont get me wrong, I love grappling, but would it kill ya to try and hurt the other guy while ur down there?

    • robby sonnenberg

      bro, please for the love of ******* god do not compare clay guida to arturo gatti.

    • stevemcz11

      I thought the Maynard fight was BS aswell. Guida was movin side to side for rds 1 – 3 until Maynard grabbed his hair at the end of the 3rd round. Then at the start of the 4th round Maynard ran forward with his hand open to grab Guidas hair again but Guida grabbed his own hair first and ran backwards to keep Gray away from his hair. Then for some reason people think he was running for 5 rounds when he only ran for 2 rounds and for good reason. At this point Guida had kicked him in the head 5 times and outboxed him and Gray couldnt do a thing and then everybody turned on Guida. Guida even said it to Gray after the fight and Gray admitted it. As unpopular as this statement is I dont care Gray should have been DQ’d

      • stevemcz11

        If somebody disagrees would you mind explaining why please?

        • George Sperry

          Sure Clay wasn’t fighting at all and your contention Clay was fighting is ridiculous.
          Guida lost 10 years worth of fans that night including me.
          Pathetic, disgusting performance.

          • stevemcz11

            U must be one of the goombas

    • Mark McDowall

      Great comparison!!! Very true.

    • laleggenda27

      So you wanted Gatti’s brain to be mush? Having a war every now and then is great for the fans. But purposely engaging in wars, or forgoing technique and strategy for the sake of playing rock’em sock’em, is lunacy. The are people, not video games. You might think it’s cool to see your favorite boxer become a walking vegetable by age 50, but I’m sure his family would appreciate it much less. As for Guida, I feel like the guy is pretty much doing the best he can with his ability. I don’t like his fights and don’t enjoy his fighting style. But against higher competition, this is all he can do. The “caveman” style worked against lower-tier fighters, but not against the top guys. I also thought he lost this fight, and the Pettis fight, and possibly a few others, but if this is what he has to do to be successful, I can’t demand something different. I’ll just use his fights for a bathroom break.

  • Ivo

    That’s just the japanese culture and upbringing, always respectful . (Bow)

    • DamianCross

      Unless you’re Korean.

      • Milosc

        Or Chinese…

        …or a 12 year old girl with blue hair being ravaged by a space demon

        (completely fair)

  • diazfan209

    what a class act, gotta be a fan of Hioki

    he’s looking at himself and nobody else, though if I were him, getting taken down by Guida, with that greasy hair in my grill, I’d be disappointed in myself too for letting him get away with it

    still though, the judge that scored Guida 30-27 just goes to show how much a takedown and having top position is worth in a decision, it’s boring and not attractive but they get away with it and greg jackson has a list of champs because of it!

  • Clay Guida, did not watch.

    • stevemcz11

      I wonder if Clay has heard of you. I’m sure he would be inconsolable to hear Julian Moran “did not watch”

  • Madmmax

    Much respect to Hioki

  • George Sperry

    Very classy guy, the kind that USED to dominate Martial Arts, you know, the opposite of Chael Sonnen,
    Hioki won that fight though.

  • MuayThaiFood

    I think choking someone with their own hair should be a legal move.

  • This truly makes Hatsu a great fighter. Showing respect and learning from this loss.

  • Drake

    100% Class right there. I am his new biggest fan!

  • Milosc


  • =Darky

    the judge that gave guida a 30-27 is one of guidas facebook friends lol. no joke

    As reported by bleacherreport: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1…acebook-friend

    A short snippet from the article, visit the link for the rest:

    “Both Gabriel Sabaitis (the judge who scored the bout a clean sweep, 30-27 in Guida’s favor) and Clay Guida are Illinois representatives. Fair enough, UFC on FOX 6 was hosted by the United Center in Chicago, Illinois. It’s not baffling to know that the Chicago Sports Commission would employ the services of a local judge.

    But the relationship between Guida and Sabaitis stretches a bit more. See, Sabaitis and Guida are also “Facebook friends.” Big deal, you ask? Maybe, maybe not.

    From a neutral stance, it seems a bit questionable that a man assigned the task of judging two fights on one card would just so happen to draw a bout featuring a hometown favorite. It also seems a bit questionable that no one would question the depth of Sabaitis and Guida’s relationship, given their online status as acquaintances. “

  • =Darky

    i think a lot of things would come to light if the fed were to look into fight fixing. but hey, they dont care…

  • Crashman

    This is a martial artist worth watching, he gave it his all, no excuses, other than mistakes on his own part, this is what MMA is all about, a great fight and then the respect afterwards, this isnt a personal beef on the school yard, they are grown men with ethics and the willingness to get into a very physical job. I say huge KUDO’S to Hatsu for being a true gentleman and a great up and coming fighter.

  • Hatsu is a class act. I thought he won the fight. Clay Guida’s fight style is my least favorite and find it just stahling the action. Should pass out the good old yellow card in those times in a fight ala Pride.

  • dude

    so much ******* class, big points in my eyes

  • Gregg

    Guida had needed some wins. He’s awesomely exciting, but, WINNING pays the bills, and keeps you on the card. Sometimes a change is needed.