Not much has been heard from former UFC light heavyweight champ Lyoto Machida since his loss to Jon Jones this past December. However, with a fight against Ryan Bader coming up in August at UFC on FOX 4, Machida is back in the gym getting ready for an opponent and a bit more accessible to media.
Recently “The Dragon” spoke about his match-up with Bader, as well as the lengthy absence he’ll have to deal with come showtime, plus touched on the possibility of coaching TUF Brasil 2 against Mauricio Rua as has been rumored.
“He’s coming from a win over Quinton Jackson, so I believe a good win and maybe one or two fights would put me on the line for the title,” said Machida of Bader in an interview with TATAME. “But that’s not my plan. I’m focused on doing a good fight.”
As far as the eight-month gap in activity for Machida, the 34-year old sees positives and negatives in taking so much time off.
“It’s both a good and a bad thing,” he began. “It’s good because we can rethink and we can fix our mistakes better, try to improve, but we lack fighting rhythm. When you fight every three months you’re better conditioned. We try to compensate with training and my recovery for this new bout. I guess it’s all important. It’s not by chance it’s happening to me, that’s how I try to see this. It’s best trying to understand it and see it for what it is.”
If Machida beats Bader it appears there’s a chance he could find himself coaching opposite of Rua on TUF Brasil 2, building on the overwhelming success of the series’ first season in Brazil. Machida is definitely excited about the potential of both leading a group of up-and-comers as well as getting his hands on Rua one more time.
“It’s a great opportunity both for me and Shogun in case it really happens. But now I’m not really thinking about it because it’s not official. No one has approached me to talk about it,” explained Machida before adding, “It will bring the sport closer to people because it’s broadcasted every Sunday and people watch it and we’ll have a new rematch, a fight everyone wants to see again. Who may win? We want to bring a great show to the fans. It’s very professional. I have nothing personal against him, we’re professional colleagues but we’re here to fight each other and see who’s better on that day.”
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC