Gray Maynard looks to return after "worst year" ever

Elias Cepeda
T.J. Grant [R] punches Gray Maynard at UFC 160. (Getty)

UFC 160

T.J. Grant [R] punches Gray Maynard at UFC 160. (Getty)

Gray Maynard lost twice, badly, in 2013. After two consecutive brutal KO losses, to T.J. Grant and Nate Diaz, Maynard took some time off, got his head checked out and is looking to make a return around July, according to a recent interview.

"Last year was the worst year of my life," Maynard told MMA Fighting.

"No wonder they don’t have the 13th floor in buildings. Thirteen sucks. I hate it. It was a tough year. There was a lot going on, the losses, my dogs died…we had a new baby, but the baby was born in 2012. If she was born in 2013, I wouldn’t be able to call it the worst year of my life. But she was born in 2012, so 2013 was the worst year of my life. Just a crazy year, so it was good to get it done with and start a new year."

It has been a rough past few years for "The Bully," actually. The top-contender has won only once in his last five fights - a controversial decision win over Clay Guida. 

Maynard's last clear-cut win was way back in 2010, when he earned a decision over Kenny Florian. More worrisome than that, however, is the fact that Maynard was undefeated prior to this rough patch and, that all three of his career losses have occurred recently and all were knockouts.

Maynard said that UFC brass ordered him to undergo brain examinations to determine if he's sustained damage. "After the Nate bout, I took some time off and I did some testing on my head, obviously, just to check that everything was alright," he revealed.

"To be honest, the day after and even a couple of days after, I didn’t have headaches, I wasn’t hurting. Just a couple of scrapes. But then people who were close to me, Dana [White], the Fertittas, they wanted me to get checked out...It all came back great."

Even so, Maynard thought it best to take time off from fighting and rest his mind and body. The fighter plans to return mid-summer and said he'd reveal changes he's making to his training next month.

"I still took off some time just to make sure," he said.

"You hear all kinds of horror stories with boxers, horror stories about whomever. I just think the last couple of fights it was more of a lapse in judgment and not being prepared to compete."

Who do you want to see Maynard fight next? Let us know in the comments section.

Follow Elias on Twitter @EliasCepeda & @YahooCagewriter

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