Las Vegas, NV — Recency bias or not, Clay Guida’s come-from-behind submission win against Leonardo Santos is likely to be in the running for Comeback of the Year for 2021.
In the moment, the veteran knew that “this is not how this year is supposed to end.” Especially not in front of the first fans Guida had seen since 2019. And his parents, who were in attendance at the UFC Apex on Saturday.
“I took some shots, like we have in the past, and we just kept on coming like we always do. That’s all we know.” That, and his wrestling, gets the credit, Guida added.
Asked where the win ranks in his lengthy career, Guida (37-21) replied “I tell you what, if there were [a full house of] fans, it would be right up there with our UFC debut back in 2006 against Justin James.”
Guida turns 40 later this week, but he’s not done yet. Far from it. “The Carpenter” even had a callout locked and loaded. “We want to stay on the gas pedal, stay active, and there’s still one dude out there with our name on him. Beat him once, I’ll give him another chance. Nate Diaz, I know you’re out there. You can’t run, you can’t hide. I know you’re going to turn the fight down, you probably don’t even know that we want to fight you again, but if you ever want to do it again buddy, I’ll give you a shot at it. So let me know.”
And if you’re wondering if Guida feels his age, he had this to say. “I feel like a 21-year old wrecking machine, especially being around guys in the gym like Darren Elkins, Josh Emmett, Cody Garbrandt, Andre Fili. So many guys that I’m probably forgetting to name. Those are some of the older guys in the gym that keep just defying the odds and keep coming up with big, big wins. So I get to train with them daily, and the stable of guys that we have— if I can’t keep up with the young bucks at Team Alpha Male, then I’m in trouble. I know we’ve got the pedigree in the room to keep getting better.”
Watch the full UFC Vegas 44 post-fight press conference with Clay Guida above. More coverage can be found below.