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5 Oz. of Pain on CBS Sports: Rashad Evans’ first title defense should be against Lyoto Machida

In his latest submission for CBSSports.com, FiveOuncesOfPain.com Publisher Sam Caplan has penned an opinion/editorial article suggesting that if Lyoto Machida defeats Thiago Silva at UFC 94, the UFC should have Rashad Evans’ first defense of the UFC light heavyweight title take place against him.

“If Machida beats Silva, he’ll increase his MMA record to 14-0 and his record in the UFC to 6-0. With notable wins over the likes of Stephan Bonnar, Rich Franklin, B.J. Penn, Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou and Tito Ortiz, no one can claim Machida has built his perfect record with hollow victories,” Caplan writes.

“Machida has a resume that shouts ‘No. 1 contender,'” he continues. “Whether he deserves that designation over Jackson is up for debate, but a win over Silva clearly makes him a worthy challenger for the light heavyweight title”

Caplan’s stance comes at a time when many — including UFC President Dana White — tend to be leaning towards Quinton “Rampage” Jackson getting the first show at Evans. However, Caplan believes that the UFC might want to listen to Jackson’s expressed desire to seek revenge against Forrest Griffin before he challenges for the light heavyweight title again.

“Evans’ first title defense could come in April or May, and by bundling Evans vs. Machida and Jackson vs. Griffin II on the same card, it will take some of the pressure off Evans to draw a strong buy rate and will help ease him into a headlining role,” he writes.

“Granted, the UFC doesn’t need to make Griffin vs. Jackson II just to complement Evans’ first defense, but the matchmaking would present a seamless picture at light heavyweight going forward. Regardless of which two fighters win the hypothetical 205-pound doubleheader, the victors would be positioned to go head-to-head at a later date.”

To read the article in its entirety, just click here.

62 COMMENTS
  • Patrick says:

    If Machida beats Thiago Silva – Title Shot for Machida, Rampage vs. Forrest 2

    If Thiago Silva beats Machida – Rampage gets a title shot, Forrest vs. Machida

    That’s how I see it happening, or at least would like to see it happen that way.

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  • stan says:

    Does anyone really think the UFC would want to be in the position where a fighter that refuses to engage his opponents holds the most prestigious title in the sport? They need someone that will sell PPV buys, either a fighter with a strong personality and willingness to engage or one of their propped up TUF guys.

    Machida winning the title would be an absolute disaster for the division. It’s painful enough to watch his matador act for 3 rounds, I don’t think I could take it for 5.

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  • neosamurai says:

    I think Machida will beat Thiago and then he should get a Title Shot. I’m just looking forward to the 17th. The UFC coming to my own country and my own city. Oh Yeah!!!!!! Not the greatest card ever but I don’t care. And the fact that it sold out means they’re likely to return.

    Now all we need is WEC/Dream/Sengoku and so forth to get TV coverage over here and it’s a great New Year baby.

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  • Ervine383 says:

    This fight would be awesome! Of course so would Rampage. I wouldn’t want to pick a winner. They’re both so crafty. Joe Silva, make it happen.

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  • 45 Huddle says:

    I think it makes much more sense to do Evans vs. Machida/Silva and the winner of that fight the winner of Forrest/Jackson. That helps build things up more. by going straight to Evans/Jackson, I think they are losing out on some valuable build-up.

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  • Handover Fist says:

    Doesn’t Forrest have a broken hand that’s going to keep him out 6 months?

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  • Josh Gardner says:

    Machida will not get the fight simply because his style is boring, he is evasive and fights backing up. He will never sell out like a Chuck Liddell or Rampage, and this is why Dana will not give him a title shot. Nobody is going to pay for a boring fight, the Tito fight hurt my eyes to watch. However Thiago Silva is a very exciting fighter to waych, and at the end of the day it is still a business, they are going to do whatever makes the most money!

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  • Amir K says:

    Lyoto has to finish a fight he did against Soko but he was gassed after 2 minutes his olny big win is Tito and most consider him washed up besides that fight he has gone to decision with Hoger,Nakumara,and David Heah come on now if Jon Fitch had to wit so long for a title shot I don’t see what Lyoto has done to deserve one if Lyoto comes out and puts the stamp on Silva maybe all change my mind but his style of fighting makes me want to go and make a sandwich when his fighting

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  • Beef Bus says:

    Machida probably will beet Silva but the ufc will still give the shot to rampage cause he is a bigger name.

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  • ctownhood says:

    Amir, how was Lyoto gassed against Tito? And for the record, he has beaten some quality opponents you might have heard of…Rich Franklin, BJ Penn, Stephan Bonner. He has beaten everyone that he has faced. Anyone who doesn’t admire Machida’s fighting style should maybe quit watching MMA and start watching WWE. It’s the same guys who’d rather watch a 13-10 slugfest baseball game, rather than a 1-0 pitchers duel.

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  • JJ Docker says:

    I disagree with the conclusions reached in this article. It may make an interesting article to route for a generally unfavored fighter, but it really doesn’t make sense. I appreciate Machida’s ability as much as anyone else, I like him, but, through common sense and precedents that have been previously set, Rampage must get first choice here. Lets not forget that Jackson lost his belt in a close and contentious decision to Griffin – he wasn’t knocked out or decisively beaten. I do believe Griffin won the fight, but it is open to debate. Jackson comes back and knocks out a top 10 (former recent top 3) light heavyweight fighter in Silva, in a brutal and obviously decisive fashion. I do not dislike Machida, I respect his style and admire how difficult he is to fight. But lets put some of his 13 career wins, some mentioned in this article, in perspective. He fought BJ Penn in a catch-weight bout and weighed just under 220 whilst Penn was somewhere around 180, and won a fairly close decision; I think that says it all. He beat Rich Franklin, decisively yes, but that wasn’t the same Rich Franklin we see today. And then he has decision wins over Hoger, Heath, Nakamura and Ortiz. All of these fighters no longer compete in the UFC. So although I agree it is definitely not a hollow record, Machida has hardly been defeating top-tier light heavyweight fighters. But, still, in a different circumstances I think his record and recent wins could easily warrant a title shot. For example if he was a middleweight fighter, competing in a much weaker division, giving him a title shot would be a sensible thing to do. But unfortunately for him he’s not. He’s in the arguably the most stacked division in all MMA, where there are several fighters in the title picture who have been fighting and defeating, in more impressive fashion, better fighters than he has; at the top of this list is Jackson. Since entering the UFC he has beaten Liddell, Henderson and Silva – legitimate, top ranked fighters. In doing so he captured the belt and lost it via a close decision to another top ranked fighter in Griffin. In the past when a champion has lost it is common practice to give them a fight against a top opponent and if they win grant them a rematch. Think GSP, think Hughes, think Liddell had he beaten Jardine. Rampage should get priority here. Offer him the title fight with Evans and if he doesn’t want it and instead really wants a rematch with Griffin give him that. Then give the title shot to Machida – should he overcome Thiago Silva. Which I’m pretty sure he will.
    Whatever happens, the UFC’s light heavyweight division is by far and away the most interesting in the world.

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  • Josh says:

    ctownhood… thats a very good opinion, but just because thats how you feel doesn’t make it fact. I am a very loyal MMA fan, and I truly respect great fighters especially a jiujitsu battle, judo whatever the case as long as its exciting. Machida fights to not lose, he does not fight to win. You keep mentioning BJ Penn, wow, a light heavy weight beat a natural lightweight, that is truly amazing.
    Your right, he does deserve a title shot, do you think chuck could beat a lightweight? Lets give him another shot. Fact is, Dana White has dropped many fighters because they were not exciting, if the UFC can’t make money on a fighter, they have no need for that fighter, it has nothing to do with deserving! Its a business, I feel the same way, I will not spend $50 to watch Machida back peddle for three rounds.

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  • lou says:

    Espn reported today that Jackson would be fighting Evans in July, how true ths is I do not know, but I read it this morning on the bottom of the screen when they were talking about Jackson pleasding guilty to his reckless driving charges

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  • persian_prince says:

    Only micky mouse mma fans with no what so ever knowledge about the game, other than what they learned in the past year from the big shows would call Machidas game boring. Machida is one of the most technical and intelligent fighters out there, and if you knew anything about anything, would simply love watching him fight. If you want two stupid guys slinging at each other go watch a bum fight video instead, mma is not for you.

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  • 45 Huddle says:

    That would be UFC 100 I think.

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  • BigDave says:

    Why dont they just end all the this guy should get it no this guy should stuff. Here is my idea let me know what you think. Now i think all will agree that LHW is the top division in the UFC so why not at UFC 100 a monumental event have an old style LHW tournament. Take the top 8 guys at LHW which if im not mistaken would be Rashad Evans, Quinton Jackson, Forrest Griffin, Lyoto Machida, Thiago Silva, Chuck Liddel, Keith Jardine, and should he decide to make the permanent move to 205 Anderson Silva.

    This to me would be the greatest MMA event in the history of the sport.

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  • stan says:

    Comparing Machida’s style to 1-0 Pitcher’s duel is interesting… But then I still imagine Bud Selig crapping his pants every time there’s a 1-0 pitcher’s duel in a world series game and the casual fans all tune out.

    I liked the Machida-Ortiz fight and nearly jumped out of my chair when Ortiz tried that triangle in the 3rd round. Machida is a great guy to have starting out a card for the hardcore fans to see, maybe even headline a Spike TV show against a lesser opponent that he actually has a chance to knock out. But he’s not the guy the UFC wants to headline major PPV events, especially as champion of its marquee division.

    I’d like to see Dan Henderson or Randy take him on though. I wonder what he’d do in a clinch or if he could run fast enough to stay out of it. I can imagine him getting the Werdum treatment of being cut after 1 loss because his style isn’t compelling enough to bring in money for big events.

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  • dpk says:

    Wow, Thiago Silva gets no respect. I think Machida will win the fight, but I expected more than a few people to pick him on here. UFC is waiting for the Machida v Silva fight to play out, because if Machida knocks out Silva in impressive fashion (i.e. his fight with Rich Franklin, watch it if you haven’t, and you see what happens when someone really tries to pressure Machida) then the whole dynamic changes. I also think UFC is waiting for all of Rampage’s legal matters to settle.

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  • Tony Fennen says:

    To say Lyoto wont get the fight because his style is “boring” is RETARDED.
    Have you ever watched the UFC??

    IN MY OPINION:
    Rashad does NOT deserve the belt.
    Forrest didnt even beat Rampage.
    (why do you think Rampage wants a rematch? He knows he really one the first fight)

    Lyoto vs T.Silva (Winner is #2 contender)
    Rashad (Paper Champ) vs Rampage (#1 Contender)

    If Rashad beats Rampage… I will call Rashad the REAL CHAMP

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  • MacBatty says:

    While i am like most of you i do not like Rashad. To be honest i have been rooting against him since he was on TUF and he has been proving me wrong ever since. Now while i dont like him i do call him Champion…..He did knock the crap out of everyone’s darling Chuck Liddell…and he did beat the champion in a non controversial way. So to sit here and say he is a paper champion is demeaning to everything he has done. His only blemish is the fact that he should have gotten a L for that fight against Tito.

    On that note i will be rooting for whoever takes him on in his 1st title defence and so on and so on.

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  • BigDave says:

    read my post above ^^^^

    Im really interested in what people think of my idea for UFC 100

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  • keith says:

    machidas style is the style of the future. he beats up his opponents. he dosent like to get hit, this is smart of him. if you hate this style of smart fighting, then maybe you should stick with the old school “tough man” fights. mma by its nature, is meant to evolve. this evasive style is what our future champions will incorporate into their gameplans. it works. stop hating him just because your favorite fighter cant touch him.

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  • G-DUB says:

    BigDave …. that kind of tournament would be monumental, but it could never happen … at least not all in one night. Too much scrutiny these days (and deservedly so) on the long-term health of fighters. I could be wrong but I can’t see any state athletic commission letting this go on. Beyond that, you’ve heard that Dana is critical/vocal about the physical tool that fighter’s bodies took in these types of tournaments in PRIDE days and how it might be the cause of their early demise.
    Furthermore, Keith Jardine wouldn’t be in my consideration set for any discussion of a UFC LHW Top 10 (let alone top 8). Aren’t you forgetting Rich Franklin?

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  • Nuge says:

    Yamma did an 8 man tournament last year and the only way it was allowed was if the first 2 fights were 1 round fights.

    It was possibly the single most boring mma event ever.

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  • Cathedron says:

    I totally understand everyone’s issue with Machida, but I agree that he deserves a title shot if he wins his next fight. I know he’s not exciting and I don’t think there’s a good excuse for that. Other counter-fighters are exciting. Liddell and Anderson Silva use countering, but they aren’t afraid to fully engage when an opening presents itself. I think Machida’s a little too afraid of getting hit. Even when he’s got someone dead to rights, he won’t go for the kill or take chances. He’s so good. I hate seeing his career move so slowly because of his constant “elusiveness”. I think it’ll take a big loss to get him to rethink his approach.

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  • Grappo says:

    I find Machida’s style very interesting. I don’t understand people that can’t enjoy the strategic nature of his fighting style. The frustration on the faces of his opponents that can’t come up with a way to shut him down is great theater. I don’t see him constantly backing up either. He circles, sidesteps, EVADES punishment. All the while doing damage to his increasingly disillusioned opponents. He’s a great fighter, with a style that’s uniquely his. He’s already proven he deserves a title shot. A win over Silva that doesn’t end up with a title shot will cause me to lose even more faith in the UFC management, if that’s possible. I don’t want to just see fights that will sell, I want to see the best fighters get the opportunities they deserve. A legitimate sport.

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  • NJMMAFAN says:

    Forrest beat Rampage, sorry Tony. As much as I dont like Rashad, a “paper champ”? Give the guy a little respect. At least he TKO’d the champ and didnt hit him three times a round and run from him till he got a decision. Machida has beaten BJ Penn, yes, 4 years ago…Franklin and Bonner 6 years ago. Real impressive list of recent wins…Tito, who probably would have won had machida fought for longer than two out of fifteen minutes. One finish in his last 6 fights is not very impressive in my book. In boxing, the challenger used to have to KO the champ in order to take his title…If that were true machida could probably go 230-0 and never hold a title

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  • NJMMAFAN says:

    PS-Ive been watching MMA for the last 7 years or so and just because i prefer to see either an exciting jui jitsu battle or a good stand up war and NOT someone backpeddling away from a fight constantly hardly makes me a “mickey mouse fan”. I am simply saying i would not pay money to watch his style of fighting, and im not alone on that, so the ufc having to keep giving him fights would cost them ppv buys. Maybe they should keep him on Spike.

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  • BigDave says:

    G-DUB i see your point and i but Jardine in there over franklin based on his activity lately and him beating Liddel if i was gonna take out Jardine i would remove liddel aswell and put in henderson and franklin. Nuge yes the YAMMA tournament was a bust i think they had the right idea though just not the caliber of fighters to be able to make it exciting or a ppv draw but with the names in the ufc lhw division i beleive it would be an amazingly competative and enjoyable thing to see. And G-DUB the way i think they could get it sanctioned and be looking out for the fighters health they could propose:

    1st round : One 3:00 rds
    2nd round: Three 2:00 rds
    3rd round: Three 3:00 rds

    With this set up they would at the very most fight 18 mins rather then the 15 mins they would fight in a conventional title fight.

    I know there isnt much chance of this ever happening but I sure as hell would love to see it that way there would be no question who the top at 205 is.

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  • G-DUB says:

    BigDave … do you really believe that you can take the 8 best LHWs in the world and assess who is the better fighter via one 3-min round? … or even three 2-min rounds? There would be too much controversy and many unanswered questions.
    I’m with you though on the 8-man single elimination tournament though …. just over the course of 6 months and 3 seperate evenings.

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  • Rich S. says:

    Machida, as boring as he may be, is the only person that can beat Rashad Evans [and A.Silva, of course, but we aren't sure about his LHW plans, if there are any]..

    I’ve never seen Rashad Evans rocked.. or hurt.. or even wince at a punch…
    I’ve also never seen Rashad come close to getting submitted..

    If anyone ever does beat him, it WILL be via decision..
    So, i’d say that throws out Wandy, Rampage, Liddell, Jardine [if they'd even fight each other], and really any other viable LHW..

    Rashad has always been the underdog, whether it was when he upset Whitehead and Jardine [the no.1 and 2 picks to win the whole thing] back on the show, or when he knocked out Liddell and Griffin..

    Obviously, now, that won’t be the case..

    I’ll never pick against him again..

    as for Thiago/Machida.. I think Silva’s style plays right into Machida’s.. it’s like a trap..Machida, as boring as he may be, is the only person that can beat Rashad Evans [and A.Silva, of course, but we aren't sure about his LHW plans, if there are any]..

    I’ve never seen Rashad Evans rocked.. or hurt.. or even wince at a punch…
    I’ve also never seen Rashad come close to getting submitted..

    If anyone ever does beat him, it WILL be via decision..
    So, i’d say that throws out Wandy, Rampage, Liddell, Jardine [if they'd even fight each other], and really any other viable LHW..

    Rashad has always been the underdog, whether it was when he upset Whitehead and Jardine [the no.1 and 2 picks to win the whole thing] back on the show, or when he knocked out Liddell and Griffin..

    Obviously, now, that won’t be the case..

    I’ll never pick against him again..

    as for Thiago/Machida.. I think Silva’s style plays right into Machida’s.. it’s like a trap..Machida, as boring as he may be, is the only person that can beat Rashad Evans [and A.Silva, of course, but we aren't sure about his LHW plans, if there are any]..

    I’ve never seen Rashad Evans rocked.. or hurt.. or even wince at a punch…
    I’ve also never seen Rashad come close to getting submitted..

    If anyone ever does beat him, it WILL be via decision..
    So, i’d say that throws out Wandy, Rampage, Liddell, Jardine [if they'd even fight each other], and really any other viable LHW..

    Rashad has always been the underdog, whether it was when he upset Whitehead and Jardine [the no.1 and 2 picks to win the whole thing] back on the show, or when he knocked out Liddell and Griffin..

    Obviously, now, that won’t be the case..

    I’ll never pick against him again..

    as for Thiago/Machida.. I think Silva’s style plays right into Machida’s.. it’s like a trap..

    Look at Thiago Silva vs. Antonio Mendes..
    Despite losing, Mendes gave Thiago a run for his money in the striking, especially when that one headkick put him on the mat..

    Machida is leaps and bounds better than Mendes in the striking,
    you can expect those kicks to come faster, and from even more angles..

    I don’t see how Thiago wins that fight… he shouldn’t.. Then again, all we ever see these days is upsets soooo..

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  • Rich S. says:

    wow, wtf?
    how did that happen..

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  • Josh says:

    MMA is not Boxing, you have to go out and get title shots, you get this by being explosive and ending fights. I never said Machida isn’t talented, he is extremely talented. As a MMA fighter, you have to get your name known, the casual fan will not pay money to watch him fight. Like it or not, the so called Hard core fans can’t support MMA by themselves, it would go out of business. Now about the Hard Core fans, they are always crying about this and that, UFC should do this, this or that fighter is the best, how many of you hard core fans actually practice MMA? Probably very few. I am a big time fan and practice MMA, don’t give me this stuff about go watch WWE or tough man fights. If you guys want machida to be champion so bad, go buy him a Wamma belt! He can hang out with Fedor then!!!!

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  • Grappo says:

    NJMMAFAN – “Tito, who probably would have won had machida fought for longer than two out of fifteen minutes.”


    You mean to say, ‘Tito, who would have won if only Machida had fought him the way that Tito wanted him to.’

    Machida clowned him. Tito’s game is ground and pound, but I don’t see you bagging on him for being one-dimensional. The fact is he needed to get Machida to the ground to even have a chance, and he couldn’t do it. Machida’s game plan was perfect. Avoided the takedown attempts (manhandled Tito actually) landed some good shots, and really got into Tito’s head by avoiding Tito’s half-hearted attempts at striking.


    NJMMAFAN – “I am simply saying i would not pay money to watch his style of fighting, and im not alone on that, so the ufc having to keep giving him fights would cost them ppv buys. Maybe they should keep him on Spike.”

    So, a proven contender shouldn’t get the shot he deserves just because you and some others don’t like his style? I sure hope a lot of the Machida haters don’t have the same mindset as you. It really detracts from the legitimacy of the sport as a whole. Hate on his style, but give the man his due.

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  • NJMMAFAN says:

    I never said he was a shitty fighter or that i hated him. he just doesnt have a very fan friendly style. Look at rashads last few fights, he got away with one vs Tito…which now i realize it sounds like im defending tito every chance i get but without that point deduction thats titos fight, eeks one out over bisping, then beats up chuck and gets himself a title shot, while machida keeps winning, dont u think theres credence to the fact dana doesnt support machidas fighting style either? i dont support not giving the man a shot cause he has a tendency to evade a bit too much, but i do understand from a businessman aspect.

    and if i had meant to say that id have said it, however you can hardly man handle someone if you dont clinch or grapple at all. At the end of the fight, once it hit the ground machida did ok but was nearly beat by that triangle tito pulled out his ass…
    Lastly, If “stick and move” has become the new discovery of BJJ, as in how everyone responded back in the early ufc days to it and incorporated it, such as keith says “mma by its nature, is meant to evolve. this evasive style is what our future champions will incorporate into their gameplans” It is meant to evolve, but without fights like scott smith pete sell, guida vs huerta, stout v fisher, and bonner v griffin, how will you keep the attention of the casual fan who flicks through the channels, and stops cause he sees people fighting. these fans are just as important as the guy that orders every card. If the fighters are “evading” the entire time, chances are best that the guy changes the channel. Remember this is all my opinion, im not blasting machida, i hope he puts on a good show and gives people a reason to change their mind about him. Until then i reserve the right to say i am not a fan of his evasive style.

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  • Grappo says:

    NJMMAFAN –

    Of course Dana doesn’t want Machida to fight for the title, or God forbid, WIN the title. That’s probably why White and Silva gave him admittedly sub-par match-ups in his first 3 fights. After that, it was pretty much impossible for them not to step up the competition. He came into the UFC undefeated with wins over 2 former UFC champs, yet they didn’t give him a good fight until Sokoudjou (who I expect they thought would destroy Machida.) The division is so stacked that it’s ridiculous that he hasn’t been given serious competition until recently. I can also understand why the UFC doesn’t want Machida headlining a card, but I’m just a fan. I want to see the best fight the best, and most Machida haters will admit that he is one of the best fighters out there. Your comment that “Maybe they should keep him on Spike” after skewering his style and diminishing his victories is what made me think that you wouldn’t want him to have a title shot unless he fought in a way that you found more exciting.

    And he did manhandle Tito whenever they came together. Tito’s sloppy takedown attempts (few as they were) ended with Machida either shrugging him off like he was nothing, or throwing him around like a rag doll. He even threw Tito on his head against the fence. He was clearly the stronger fighter. You say he fought for 2 out of 15 minutes… I don’t think we saw the same fight. He beat Tito up. Made him look foolish. Yeah, it would be nice if he mixed it up with more combinations rather than single strikes. I’ll admit he is not as exciting as some other fighters, but to say he constantly backpedals away from the fight is disingenuous. He usually sidesteps at a backward angle ;) and punches guys in the face while doing it. I hope he does become more aggressive in the future, but I also think that there’s something very interesting in watching him pick apart his opponents the way he does. It’s always good to see somebody be masterful at something.

    As far as Machida’s style being the future, I really doubt that. Just because it works for him doesn’t mean everyone will be able to do it, no matter how hard they train. Nor would most of them even want to (probably.) The scrappers will always be around, and thank goodness for that.

    This sort of reminds me of some people I know who are just getting into MMA. They’ve said they love the fights, but they can’t stand it when it goes to the ground. “Grown men humping each other isn’t fighting.” As they watch and learn more, hopefully they will come to find all aspects and styles interesting in their own way. There’s only one thing I don’t like… when a fighter is one-dimensional.

    Anyway, I respect your opinion, though I don’t agree with it.

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  • NJMMAFAN says:

    Answer me this…were we too hard on Kalib Starnes? Or did we not appreciate his uncanny ability to sidestep at a backward angle…was he before his time? I jest. Quality post Grappo. Suppose a Silva refuses to chase him, and just stands there and makes lyoto come to him. Will people label him a boring fighter.

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  • EamonJGod says:

    I can’t stand Tito, but to say Machida beat Tito up is a little slanted. If he really manhandled him so easy he would have finished the fight, or come closer than landing one good knee. If Lyoto were to fight more intelligent fighters his style wouldn’t fly. If he is to fight Rashad I hope Rashad will be patient and plant in the middle of the octagon and not chase him. Lyoto doesn’t have the chin to mix it up in the stand up at his weight, nor the pedigree to finish fights on the ground, (besides landing a decent arm triangle on sokoudjou, who isn’t a maverick on the ground) he’s got two decent stoppages and a victory over a fairly green Stephan Bonnar via cut a midst a slue of decisions. There’s guys like Okami with a lot of decisions on their records going for a title shot now but he’s still way more entertaining, and has put away the more unknown people he’s fought with decent tko’s. Basically time will show that Machida is NOT the future of the sport, and has been getting a lucky stroll through his career until now. Any real contender would have made short work of Ortiz at that point in his career.

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  • keenan says:

    franklin vs machida 2 the rematch

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  • HexRei says:

    EamonJGod, how do you know what Machida’s chin is like? He’s really never been in serious trouble from a strike in any of his fights.

    Furthermore:

    “Any real contender would have made short work of Ortiz at that point in his career.”

    Rashad Evans was one cage-grab away from losing his fight against Ortiz totally (as opposed to a weak draw), and that was basically the same Tito that Machida fought- and yet you are picking Rashad over Machida. Are you saying Rashad isn’t a real contender?

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  • mu_shin says:

    First, compliments to Sam on the CBS article, and for this discussion of the most unique, most reviled fighter in all of MMA. Lyoto Machida is a true martial artist, a great MMA fighter, and likely a future Light Heavyweight champion.

    The boring/exciting debate is indicative of how effective this guy is in the ring. I keep reading posts of how he backpedaled all night against Tito, but I just watched a rebroadcast of that fight, and he hit Tito so hard with his knee to the liver he buckled his knees and knocked Tito to the canvas. Did any of you see Tito’s face when that fight was over? He looked like he got mugged, and Machida had not a mark. How do you floor someone with a knee and leave his face bruised and bloody if you won’t engage?

    Also indicative of Lyoto’s effectiveness is how many of the boring backpedaling won’t engage comments also state that they think he will beat Thiago Silva, an acknowledged brawler that people find more “exciting”. I think this will be a great match-up, but I too expect Machida to have his fist raised at the conclusion of this fight.

    His elusiveness is everything a real martial artist trains to be. Have you seen any opponent get a heavy sweet shot on him? His escape of a complete triangle against Tito is also overlooked, as if Ortiz just let him go… This is a guy who has rolled on the ground with Anderson Silva (who has stated publicly he would not choose to fight Machida due to their friendship, and sees him as a potential LHW champion) and Wanderlei Silva, a black belt in BJJ who has incredible takedown defense, not to mention perhaps the best defensive skills in standup this sport has seen.

    Boring? Deal with it. He’s the real thing, and hate him or whatever, find someone who can beat him and I’ll give more credence to your arguments.

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  • James says:

    the most deserving contender has nothing to do with the style or appeal of the fighter…it has to do with their w’s and l’s and who they are against…that being said machida definitely deserves a tshot…the anti-machida club is composed primarily of ppl who are only attracted to the most brutal, violent aspects of the sport and understand little of its technical acumen…unfortunately, the ufc seems more committed to this audience and their almighty dollar

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  • Hellboy says:

    I always laugh when people compare Machida with Starnes, the main difference being Starnes lost his fight on points in one of the biggest gaps I have ever seen in a 3 round fight (I think it ended up being 26 to 30) while Machida took hardly any damage, messed up Titos face and won the fight 30 to 27. I get it. Machida is not for everyone, I have no problem with people saying they hate his style,I personally love his style, but I doubt it would work for most of the fighter out there. But where I think most people are lying to themselves is saying they would not buy a PPV if Machida was the headliner. I do agree that the casual fan would not be overly excited about it, but we are not casual fans, and for someone who takes the time to post about how much they dislike Machida’s style, you can not tell me that you would not fork over money to see a fight between Machida and Rampage, or Silva (either one) or Evans. You would pay, in hopes to see someone finally solve the puzzel of Machida, and that is why sooner or later he will get his shot. I would like to point out though that you don’t hear Machida begging for a title shot, I have never seen one article where he says he feels robbed, isn’t being given a chance or is being snubbed. He is a patient man, just as he is a patient fighter, and that patience will someday pay off, and I beleive we will all pay to see it.

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  • Mike Wolfe says:

    I agree with Sam on this one. If Machida defeats Silva, he’s earned his shot. He’d be undefeated with a quality wins over formidible opponents. Furthermore, I’d really like to see a Machida/Rashad fight. It would be one of the more intriguing match ups in recent memory, imo.

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  • neijia says:

    I’m conflicted about it. It’s a no-lose set of scenarios. I would love to see Rampage get the title back. I just love the guy for his personality. Still, I really admire Machida’s skills and also agree on paper he deserves first shot. I find technical fighters more interesting. But the business has to make a bottom line decision, not a “who deserves what” decision (unless they can figure how that factors into the fan draw). Rampage should also get his desired match. Man, these are all just great match-ups. Can’t wait!!!

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  • neijia says:

    @mushin: “I keep reading posts of how he backpedaled all night against Tito, but I just watched a rebroadcast of that fight, and he hit Tito so hard with his knee to the liver he buckled his knees and knocked Tito to the canvas.”

    BJ Penn talks about how hard Machida hits in his “Book of Knowledge”.

    “His elusiveness is everything a real martial artist trains to be.”

    This is so true. Unfortunately not necessarily enough for huge marketability. We can see the personality factor much more in the sport of tennis. There have been dominating athletes who are just not fan favorites.

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  • nate says:

    well said mu_shin

    I understand people being disgruntled about Machida’s style. But I like it. He had been tested against huge names & come up with wins.

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  • JOe K. says:

    The casual fan helps make this sport.

    The casual fan WILL eventually ruin this sport.

    Welcome to sports entertainment. Lyoto and Silva are undefeated and the winner of their bout IS the number one contender.

    If not they are not given the No 1 contender spot then this is the WWE with the BCS.

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  • NJMMAFAN says:

    The knee that dropped Tito came in the third round and is not, by itself, proof machida didnt spend a good amount of time sidestepping at a backward angle

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  • NJMMAFAN says:

    The knee that dropped Tito came in the third round and is not, by itself, proof machida didnt spend a good amount of time sidestepping at a backward angle…not to mention that right after that knee tito threw a triangle his way and secured it…still dont get how he didnt finish that

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  • NJMMAFAN says:

    wow that was weird sorry for repost

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  • Grappo says:

    “The knee that dropped Tito came in the third round and is not, by itself, proof machida didnt spend a good amount of time sidestepping at a backward angle”

    Nobody said it was. It was used as an example of his willingness to engage when he sees an opening, and also of his power, which has been called into question.

    “not to mention that right after that knee tito threw a triangle his way and secured it…still dont get how he didnt finish that”

    actually right after that knee, Machida pounced on him and landed some vicious punches and elbows that messed Tito up and cut him open. How did he not finish Machida with that triangle? Machida used his skill to escape. Would you chalk that up to luck rather than the skill of a person who trains every day to get himself out of that exact situation?

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  • EamonJGod says:

    I’d chalk it up to Tito being tried out from chasing him, which doesn’t prove that Lyoto’s style is effective, it proves that Tito has no brain, and let Machida decide where the fight was going at all times. I don’t mean to say Rashad’s not a true contender because he earned his title shot of a vicious win over Liddel, and finished the champ for his belt. I don’t see Lyoto doing any of that. If he demolishes Silva without controversy I can totally see why he’d be in line for a title shot. I’m also in agreement that he is an extremely skilled fighter in his own right. It’d just make more sense to be and be more interesting for the majority of the fan base to have a Rampage/Griffin rematch winner take on Evans first, then give Machida his due, considering his record it’s only fair he gets a shot, my opinion is just that he’d get beat by any of the fore-mentioned fighters.

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  • JJ Docker says:

    Some people don’t like Machida because they don’t find him exciting. So what? Who cares? People didn’t like Sylvia in the UFC because he was boring. I don’t like Sherk because I find him boring. So what. Are people, i.e. commenter’s on this article, proposing fans are not allowed to dislike a fighter? Are we not allowed to like a fighter? What are we allowed to do? Are we allowed to have opinions on fights? Fighters? Organizations? No?! Do we have to like everything?
    This is a sport. Fans have favorites and individuals they don’t like so much. Why do people take it so personally when its Machida? Who cares? Some people hate Rampage, so what? Some people hate Matt Hughes, so what? I despise Keith Jardine. So what? Its not because I met him and he was rude to me. Its not because I was stood behind him in a queue and he broke wind on my hand. I just don’t find him very favorable. Thats all. One of the biggest draws of televised sport is the personalization with the athletes, with the characters, with the individuals. Its the judgment of humanity and it takes place everywhere, everyday. Some people you like some people you don’t. Some styles you like some you don’t. If fans don’t find Machida’s style entertaining, whats the problem? The bares resemblances to a YouTube video comment exchange; which is a rarity for this site.

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  • HexRei says:

    There were not nearly enough people putting down the anti-machida crowd to warrant that dramatic novel of a post, lol.

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  • Grappo says:

    @ EamonJGod
    well, then I guess the majority the fighters Machida has faced have no brain. They almost all play into his game. Which I guess does prove his style is effective, does it not?

    @ JJ Docker
    “Why do people take it so personally when its Machida?”

    you miss the point. Nobody gives a crap whether or not you or anyone else likes Machida’s style. The debate doesn’t spring from people responding to someone saying they find his style boring. The debate comes from people disagreeing on his merit as a fighter, past performances, worthiness of a title shot (which is the point of this article) and any other number of things that fans and haters alike would be interested in expressing their views about. His “boringness” is a relative non-issue. What’s the point of any debate about anything? Why even allow comments on this site? Who cares? You rhetorically ask if we are allowed to have opinions, and then proceed to chide people for expressing their own. Who cares? The people that bothered to post care, I suppose, including you.

    But really, who cares? So what? I like chicken fried steak. Who cares? I abhor double negatives and people who state unknowns as fact. So what? Who cares? I’ve drunk that, I’ve drunk this, I’ve spewed up on a pint of piss. So what? So what?

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  • ctownhood says:

    Keenan..it was reported that Franklin was offered Machida to avenge his loss…only to turn it down because he said Machida’s style is “boring”. That translates to ” I can’t figure out how to beat him”. I am a huge Rich Franklin fan too, not trying to bash, but sounds like he wants nothing to do with a rematch.

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  • Eamon J God says:

    Quality post JJ Docker, Grappo you lost me at ‘I’ve spewed up on a pint of piss’

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  • king mah mah says:

    I don’t really like Machidas style either but you can’t keep over looking him. If he beats Silva and is STILL undefeated, then he absolutely should get a title shot. Besides, I think he would beat Rashad and I really can’t stand that jackass! The sooner someone takes the belt from Rashad the better. Machida could very well be that person.

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  • Grappo says:

    “Grappo you lost me at ‘I’ve spewed up on a pint of piss”

    it was reference to a song that Metallica covered that bears resemblance to JJ’s post.

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  • EamonJGod says:

    I still don’t see the connection.

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  • Nate says:

    MacBatty — well said on Rashad, sums up my feelings on him too.

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