Demian Maia vs. Anthony Rocco Martin is in the works for UFC Fight Night Minneapolis on June 29, sources told ESPN. Not officially signed, but that’s the direction. Martin has won 4 in a row since move up to 170. @raphamarinho first reported the news.— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) April 25, 2019
First reporting this was Combate on Thursday, which claimed that Maia (26-9) will meet Martin (16-4) at UFC on ESPN 3 in Minneapolis, Minn., on June 29.
Maia snapped a three-fight losing streak this past February -- the longest of his career -- with a first-round submission victory over Lyman Good. Tapping out Good with a rear-naked choke, he tied Kenny Florian's record for the most submissions using that maneuver, as well as tying Royce Gracie for the second most submissions in UFC history with 10. This bout will be his 30th inside the Octagon, and only three other fighters -- Jim Miller, Donald Cerrone and Jeremy Stephens -- have amassed at least 30 UFC appearances.
Martin has reinvented himself since moving back up to welterweight in April 2018, also changing his billed name, and has won ever since. Martin has won his last four fights, finishing the likes of Jake Matthews and Ryan LaFlare, and topping Sergio Moraes and Keita Nakamura on the scorecards. All but one of Martin's stoppage victories have come by submission, although his opponent Maia has never been submitted as a professional.
UFC on ESPN 3 takes place on June 29 at the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minn. The event will be headlined by a welterweight rematch between former champs Tyron Woodley and Robbie Lawler. Also featured on the card will be a presumptive flyweight title eliminator between Jussier da Silva and Joseph Benavidez.