Mark Madsen relieved after narrow win over Clay Guida

LAS VEGAS – Mark Madsen remains undefeated in his professional MMA career after enduring battles in and out of the cage.

The lightweight earned his third UFC victory on Saturday when he made a split decision from Clay Guida to the UFC during the ESPN 29 main co-event.

It was a big night for Madsen (11-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC) not only for his professional career, but also in his personal life. The “Olympian” was taking a big step forward in his combat journey, but he also had just suffered a one-and-a-half-year layoff due to the pandemic, a broken jaw and a diagnosis of sclerosis in plates for his wife.

“I hear my name being called, and it was just a relief. What an incredible night, ”Madsen told the UFC at the ESPN 29 post-fight press conference.“ I put my heart and soul into the preparation. I felt I was ready. I felt that I had done my best. Clay is a standard. He’s a sports legend, and it’s an honor to face a guy like that. I’m just happy that I can make a call and tell my wife it was a win.

Madsen hopes the victory over Guida can inspire his family to keep going through adversity and keep dreaming.

“This night was special – very special,” said Madsen. “I had to do more to stay focused on the fight and what needed to be done there. I missed a few things there, but got the job done.

“I can go to the hotel and call my wife – she’s probably waking up right now – and tell her we won the fight. I hope this victory inspires my whole family to keep dreaming, making big dreams come true, and having the courage to follow them, because that’s what it takes in the end.

Although he’s only just back in the Octagon, Madsen is already considering his next step. The 36-year-old wants to fight with highly prized wrestler Gregor Gillespie to prove he is the best wrestler at 155 pounds.

“Everyone is calling people, but are you ready for the fight? Madsen said. “To be the best wrestler in the division, you have to earn that spot. Gregor Gillespie wants to be the best wrestler. I mean, I don’t know what style, because it’s definitely not Greco-Roman. I’m sitting right here. It would be an interesting fight – two different styles going against each other. Let’s put this fight on the line.

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Johnnie Hill

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