The third fight started a lot like their previous meeting at UFC 126, but Edgar pounded away at Maynard in the fourth round to win the bout by technical knockout.
The champion and challenger were patient and circled the Octagon early. Later, Edgar swarmed on Maynard for a brief clinch, but they separated a shortly after. Maynard then landed an uppercut and wobbled the champ. Edgar took some more shots from the challenger and was rocked a couple more times. Maynard attempted some more uppercuts and pressured the champion, leaving the title holder wobbly until the end of the round. The first round of this match-up was a near mirror image of their previous fight’s first round.
Maynard measured patiently as he waited for a chance to land another uppercut after the second round got underway. Frankie landed a left hand that left a mark early in the round, but there was no immediate follow-up to that. Later, the champ landed a right hand, but Maynard didn’t fall back at all. Edgar’s attempts at clinching and takedowns were also met with strong defense from the challenger. Maynard didn’t land any major powershots in the second frame and Edgar seemed to find his rhythm a little more.
Maynard continued to try and find his uppercut, while Edgar did what he could to circle and land quick combinations. Maynard didn’t find the powerpunch that helped in the first round and Edgar continued to do his typical dance and avoid his opponent, while at the same time finding some strikes that scored points. Edgar continued to pepper Maynard until the end of the round and edged him in the third frame.
Edgar continued to find combinations into the championship rounds. He landed several strikes and solidified the advantage on the feet halfway through the round with both legkicks and punches. Edgar managed to land an uppercut that wobbled the challenger and followed through with massive right hands that dropped Maynard. After Maynard went to the ground, the champ stayed on the attack kept striking from behind until his opponent was out and the ref stepped in to stop the contest 3:54 of the fourth round.
“I hit him with a right hand and… I [saw] him rocked and I just went in for the kill,” Edgar said in his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan.
With the win, Edgar avenges the only loss of his career and bests a no.1 contender that’s been chasing him for quite some time. Edgar improves his record to 14-1-1, while in the first defeat of his pro career, Maynard drops to 10-1-1, overall.
The lightweight title picture is still far from in focus, however, with UFC president Dana White’s proclamation that Strikeforce lightweight champ Gilbert Melendez is on his way to the UFC. It appears that there are still some tough fights in the future of Frankie Edgar.