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Jon Jones doesn’t see Lyoto Machida as the same fighter he once was

Jon Jones knows what it feels like to be called the next superstar of MMA, much like Lyoto Machida was once hailed as before he lost his UFC light heavyweight title.

Now, Jones, who is the current 205-pound champion, gets his opportunity to test out “The Dragon” when the two meet in the main event of UFC 140 on December 10 from Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

“Bones” has already competed three times this year, defeating Ryan Bader to earn a shot at the title, as well as the fighter who took the belt from Machida – Mauricio “Shogun” Rua. Jones stopped Rua, having since successfully defended his crown with a submission victory over Quinton “Rampage” Jackson earlier this month.

In terms of Machida, who was last seen knocking out Randy Couture and sending him to retirement, Jones believes the mystique of Machida is no longer the same due to a pair of losses he suffered against Rua and Jackson.

“We’re not fighting the undefeated Lyoto Machida anymore,” said Jones, in an interview with The Fight Network recently. “I’ve watched him lose several rounds now through studying and I just happen to have two coaches that are southpaws now as well, so there’s a lot of knowledge in my camp about fighting guys with opposite stances.”

Ever the student, Jones is already breaking down video of Machida, saying, “We feel comfortable, we feel as if there’s been some blueprints laid out (in terms of defeating Machida). Obviously, we will come up with our own blueprint, take from what we’ve seen and make it an even greater defeat. We’re excited. We’re up to the challenge.

Along with Jones-Machida, UFC 140 will feature Frank Mir meeting Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Tito Ortiz taking on Antonio Rogerio Nogueira.