UFC changes tune on top contendership at 205 pounds, adds Ryan Bader-Lyoto Machida back into the mix

The UFC’s decision to hand top contendership at 205 pounds to the winner of this weekend’s UFC on FOX 4 main event between Brandon Vera-Mauricio Rua left many fans confused about the possibility of either man earning a title-shot in spite of their recent struggles to find consistent success inside the Octagon. In fact, even light heavyweight champ Jon Jones admitted the move left him scratching his head.

However, it appears a slight change has been made in hopes of appeasing some members of the upset masses, as the UFC has gone back to their previously stated plan of allowing co-headliners Ryan Bader-Lyoto Machida into the sweepstakes as well.

“When the fans speak, we listen. So whoever scores the best win, whoever gets the fans excited by going out there on Saturday and looking the most impressive, he will get the winner of Jones vs. Henderson. It is down to what these four guys do Saturday night in the Octagon. Winning isn’t enough, they’ve got to win impressively. Any one of these four fighters can take things into their own hands and make a title shot happen,” said UFC President Dana White in a press release.

Though many folks would agree the addition of Bader/Machida is an improvement, neither man is necessarily completely deserving of a crack at the championship either. Bader is two-fights removed from back-to-back losses, including a one-sided stumble to Jones, while Machida has lost three of his last four fights with the lone victory involving a knockout of since-retired Randy Couture.

UFC on FOX 4 is scheduled to air on FOX this Saturday night starting at 8:00 PM EST.

PHOTO CREDIT – UFC

11 COMMENTS
  • MCM says:

    Would all the “fans” that want to see Jones in nothing but rematches, please step forward.

    …….anybody?

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

  • drstu says:

    Yeah when you talk about opponents for jones or for Anderson silva it doesn’t really come down to who is most deserving but rather who’s available. Anyone in consideration would have lost to these men in the last few years.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  • Mad_Hatter_XX says:

    After Hendo not sure anyone really looks like a true contender. Jones is a rare athlete in his prime and for the foreseeable future I’m not sure anyone can beat him.

    I give Hendo about a 20% chance of beating Jones, but I think the reach , youth and general athleticism of Jones will in the end be too much for Hendo.

    Jones will not stay in range and inactive long enough for Henderson to be effective with the big overhand right and having superior wrestling won’t be enough as I don’t think he can keep Jones in a position to use much if any GnP.

    Think it will be a good fight , but I see Jones getting UD or possibly late stoppage.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  • Lord Faust says:

    If you seriously think the UFC is committing to the next title fight a month before Jones and Hendo throw down…. Well, I have a bridge I’d like to sell ya.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  • AlphaOmega says:

    Machida is my favorite fighter, and while I’d like to see him wear the belt again, I don’t think he can take Jones right now, even if he did fair the best against him until getting caught with an elbow…although Machida KOing Jones like he did Couture would be awesome.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  • Lord Faust says:

    My dream scenario is Hendo pulls off some magic, H-bombs Jones to sleep and then we get Machida / Hendo which is on my bucket list of fights to see before they retire.

    Realistically, Jones probably retains and we have to pray that Glover looks like a killing machine and dispatches Rampage. Then he slides in as a fresh contender.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  • MCM says:

    If Hendo wins, there are a ton of options (although Machida and Vera should not be one). The LHW division only looks stagnant if Jones pulls off the W. And again, it only LOOKS stagnant cause Dana is ignoring all the other fighters that have looked pretty dominant and only recycles the same old names.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  • I know Gustaffson Te Huna and Glover all come to mind as surging contenders. I dont write Hendo off though. Very few people have his iron chin or will to match. Jones wont KO Dan and the “far superior” wrestling is debatable. I think Henderson will be the first guy in a long time that doesnt just look at Jones with the “what do I do?” face.
    Im hopin Old Man Dan pulls it out…he deserves UFC gold before he walks away.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  • darth_irritable says:

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Machida get another crack at Jones. You got anyone else that has a shot? Maybe the next big thing is Glover, but I definitely think it’s too soon for Gustafsson to get a fight – the destruction would be devastating to him.

    I’m with SuperDave. I reckon Hendo pulls one last title out of his ass.

    Of course, that’s partly because I’m old, and there’s a bit of wish fulfilment in there, but dammit!

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  • THEGUNNER says:

    Off the subject but the olympics need mma.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  • joe mo mma says:

    MMA in the Olympics would be… amazing..
    1. No seeds/rankings
    2. Participants from countries all over the world
    3. Use the unified rules and established weight classes.

    The USA qualifier alone would be epic. We can only dream… for now.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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