Mayhem is the nickname, and mayhem was what he brought. Nate Maness pulled off a masterclass at UFC Vegas 37, with him inches away from being finished at the end of the first round against Tony Gravely. He picked himself up and worked the powerful jab he possesses, caught Gravely with a right-hook to knock him flat onto the canvas, and finished him with the ground strikes in the second round.
Maness has been showing off his well-rounded skill-set since he joined the UFC in 2020. He was contracted for the 135 division, but due to a late opponent change for his promotional debut, Johnny Munoz couldn’t make the weight in time, so they fought in featherweight. After Munoz won the first round, Maness bounced back with his grit and determination to grind out a hard-fought victory via unanimous decision.
After issues again with another opponent not making weight, it didn’t phase Maness competing at 140lbs, and he put on an impressive display to earn a Performance of the Night bonus over Luke Sanders at UFC Vegas 15. He submitted Sanders with the rear-naked choke to show the UFC fans, he can do it all!
Now he’s back in the 135-pound division, exactly where he wants to be. A three-fight unbeaten streak in the promotion will give Maness the opportunity to have his biggest fight next, as he edges closer to those ranked positions.
I had the pleasure of speaking to Maness after his incredible victory at UFC Vegas 37.
Interview with UFC Bantamweight Nate Maness
So, Nate, congratulations on a hard-fought, determined victory. Now you’ve had the time to process, what are your thoughts on your performance?
Nate Maness – Thank you! I’m happy with the fight as a whole. I showed a solid jab, took down the D1 wrestler and continued to show my power and toughness at 135lbs.
You took a big shot at the end of the first in which you described as a flash knockdown. How did you feel after the buzzer and when you went back to your corner?
Nate Maness – Once I stood up a few seconds later I was 100% recovered. I didn’t sit down in-between rounds, just like in the Sanders fight.
If you didn’t know, you’re the first person to knock Tony Gravely out. Can you describe to me actually how hard your punching power is!?
Nate Maness – I knew that and knew he was tough with a solid chin. I really do think if I connect clean, I can put away anyone in this division.
How was the weight cut this time around with you moving to bantamweight?
Nate Maness – I’ve been a 135er. It’s my opponents that haven’t been able to make the weight. I had a pretty easy cut.
Any idea when you want to be back in the octagon and any names you’re interested in?
Nate Maness – I broke my jaw after the shot in round 1. I hope to be fully recovered and ready to go at the start of the year. Anyone that the UFC and fans find interesting I’m down to fight.
Another 50K bonus under your belt, how have you or how are you going to celebrate the victory?
Nate Maness – Hope to take a few trips soon and do some traveling before jumping into another camp.
Featured Image Credits to Embed from Getty Images