Maynard Smothers Florian To Earn Title Shot Josh Davis May 23, 2011 News In a bout that earned him a shot at the light heavy weight title, Gray Maynard was able to smother Kenny Florian for three rounds. The fight started off slow as the fighters sized up the competition and tried to get a feel for each other. Florian attempted to keep his distance and throw punches from the outside and Maynard was happy to stay on the outside and stick and move with his punches to set up his wrestling. As Florian stalked Maynard and moved forward, Maynard was able to counter Florian with his strikes and eventually took him down. Maynard got his first take down at the end of the first round and was able to take Florian down at will from there. Florian offered very little take down defense which allowed Maynard to dictate the pace of the fight, impose his will and dominate the fight. Florian, who was fighting in front of his home town, seemed to buckle under the pressure. Florian is one of the best lightweights in the world but did very little in this fight. Florian was not able to get off his strikes, he was hesitant with his offense and had no answer for Maynard’s wrestling. Florian did not look like the fighter whose only losses in the division were in title fights. It was Maynard that looked like the fighter with championship experience and it was Maynard who earned the title shot by smothering Florian. Maynard won the decision 30-27, 30-27 and 29-28.