Off Guard: No longer with UFC, free agent Gray Maynard trying to figure out what's next

LAS VEGAS – Gray Maynard no longer is with the UFC.

“The Ultimate Fighter” Season 5 alum has competed almost his entire pro MMA career under the UFC banner, but now is ready to move on to the next chapter.

Maynard (13-7-1 MMA, 11-7-1 UFC) told MMA Junkie he has parted ways with the UFC and is still trying to figure out which promotion he’ll end up with next.

“I don’t know – we’re trying to work some stuff out,” Maynard said. “(I’m) not with the UFC anymore, so I’m trying to work some stuff out, check what’s going to make sense, and probably be at featherweight. So that’s the next step.

“It’s wide open. I’ve always dealt with the UFC like on a contractual term, and just kind of who I’m going up against, and basically, ‘Yeah, yeah, yeah, let’s do it.’ And now that I’m done, I kind of wanted to have a manager and let them deal with it.”

It’s been more than a year since Maynard last fought. He made the move back up to 155 pounds and suffered a second-round TKO loss to Nik Lentz at UFC 229. The two-time UFC lightweight title challenger said he likely will be moving back down to featherweight, where he went 2-1 in the UFC with wins over Fernando Bruno and Teruto Ishihara.

Maynard, who’s managed nearly his entire career himself, said he probably should have moved on from the UFC a while back, but was unable to because he was tied up contractually.

“Man, it was time,” Maynard said, “It’s been time for a while. And you know, great fights – I had a good time there. But it just really wasn’t doing it for me anymore. I was in my last contract with eight fights. At the beginning, I was in a nine-fight contract. So it’s been a lot of long holds, and there weren’t really a lot of options as I was coming up. Lately, there’s been a lot more options, and it was a mutual deal, and I just moved on.”

Source: USA Today – MMA Junkie

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