Another AS Thread? Say it ain't so! My AS theory
So we have about a dozen of these active threads floating around and while I looked at the others I don't think this one fit in with those. This thread isn't just about the Maia fight, it is about all of his fights in the UFC. I was talking with a friend today about this fight and out of jest I mentioned something that upon further review looks like it may actually be on to something.
My current theory on AS fights are that he is such an obsessive counter puncher that he refuses to throw the first punch even if he knows he is dominant over his opponent. In all of his fights, except for Leben, the moment his opponent was unwilling to throw anymore punches, either be being rocked or learning their lesson, AS starts to clown around to get them to throw punches. Looking through some of his previous fights again really strengthens my belief in this. While I won't go as far as to say he is afraid to throw the first punch, I will say that he is more comfortable with putting his own unprotected chin out than throwing the first punch in an exchange.
Against Griffin he never threw first in the exchanges, he let Forrest come to him. In Franklin vs AS II when Rich stopped throwing for about 45 seconds he put his hands down and stuck his chin out. Rich took the bait and AS ducked and dodged the next 3-4 strikes and hit Rich with a lazy jab for his efforts. Cote, a notorious counter striker as well, kept stalking but ultimately waiting for AS to throw the first punch. AS did everything he could to get Cote to throw first and he wouldn't. And then clearly with Maia, he got on his hands and knees and Maia still wouldn't throw. He used every cuss word in the Protégées language and Maia still wouldn't throw. Thus AS just kept with the silly shit he was doing. And the punches he did throw were half hearted at best, not meant to KO or rock Maia, more of a bitch slap to get him to throw first.
So what does this all mean? Not sure, but what it does mean is that unless you get an aggressive striker to fight AS you are probably going to have a boring fight. How can this knowledge lead a fighter to victory? It probably can't, but it does tell you that AS will wait for you to strike so if you are prepared for it maybe you can find a hole in his counter striking (good luck!). But I think the theory is sound going off of his fights since Leben. I think he made an example of Leben to get his name known, but then again Leben is an aggressive style so AS could have gotten extremely ******* lucky getting Leben as his first fight.
So what do you think, am I blowing smoke or is there truth to my theory? Remember, I am not saying he is scared, more of the "you can't teach old dogs new tricks" in reference to his striking.