Popular UFC veteran Clay Guida, who's had 16 fights in the 155lb division since 2006, moves down to Featherweight at UFC on Fox Johnston vs. Dodson on January 26, 2013, in Chicago, Illinois, against Hatsu Hioki. Guida put together a 4-fight win streak in 2010 and 2011 after moving to Greg Jackson's MMA camp that got him as far as a title eliminator against current champ Ben Henderson on the first UFC on Fox card.
Sadly for Guida he lost that fight and then put on a stinker of a performance against Gray Maynard at UFC on FX 4 that saw him lose both the decision and the support of fans and UFC brass. Guida adopted a new tactic of stick and move, minus the stick part that flummoxed Maynard, pissed off Dana White and had the fans booing.
Guida spoke to UFC.com's Thomas Gerbasi about his move to Featherweight:
"Looking at my record in the UFC, 9-7, it just doesn't sit well, and I demand more out of myself and I know I can do better and always improve," he said. "People see my fighting style, and if they've seen my fights, that record could be 15-1 just like that. I think there's only really one fight that I went out there and it wasn't even a close fight, and that was the Kenny Florian fight (in 2009), which helped change my career in a positive way. So looking at it as a whole and in the bigger picture of my career, after the Maynard fight I spoke with my brother (fellow fighter Jason Guida), who is a huge influence in my life and my career, and he said it might be that time to cut those extra pounds and get down to '45 and start pushing people around and start knocking dudes out. He said ‘You had some close fights, you stunned Gray a few times and wobbled Ben, but we've gotta start finishing these guys.' So I thought about that, and let it soak in for a while.
"I just know that with the impact that Frankie (Edgar) and I are gonna make, and along with my teammates Cub Swanson and Diego Brandao, we can run the division," he said. "I don't put myself on a pedestal; I just know how competitive we are, and that with the proper training and the proper diet, it won't be more than a couple fights before the UFC's gonna want to put a big face in there. So I'm excited about the opportunity that lies ahead of us."
The 31-year-old Guida should make an impact in the FW division but Hioki will present a stern test.