Reigning Light Heavyweight Champion Jon “Bones” Jones will put his title on the line when he meets Lyoto Machida in the UFC 140 headlining bout, set to take place December 10th from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Also featured will be a Heavyweight rematch between Frank Mir and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in the co-main event, as well as a Light Heavyweight showdown pitting Tito Ortiz against Antonio Rogerio Nogueira.
Below are highlights from today’s UFC 140: Jones vs. Machida Conference Call, which included headliners Jon Jones and Lyoto Machida, as well as Frank Mir, Tito Ortiz and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (via MMAMania.com):
• The biggest difference was i had to find a lot of southpaws to work with and what I basically did was use the guys that I already had and I had to mimic their styles to the best of my ability. Everything else has been pretty much the same. I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve trained better and I eat better and I picked up the knowledge of the Ryan Bader camp, the Shogun camp and the Rampage camp and I’ve picked up so much and everything is in order.
• I try not to worry. Lyoto is a new challenge and you have nothing to fear when you’re prepared. Know yourself and know your opponent and that’s the mentality I have. When you do your work and you study, you have no fear.
• I brought in Glover Teixeira, a Heavyweight, and “King Mo” Lawal. We’ve created a whole strategy. Having those guys around me has really helped.
• It’s something that happens. There’s ups and downs at points. I’ve learned a lot from winning the title and losing it and then losing to Rampage. I’m a completely different fighter now.
• The UFC came forward and offered me the fight. There was a lot of words and circumstances surrounding the last victory as far as illnesses from Nogueira’s camp. I think that anytime, if they can explain their performance, if you’ve got an injured hand, maybe that’s why you couldn’t box more. You may not have performed 100 percent because of an injury, but you can’t blame a loss on the injury.
• For the last fight, we had more distractions and we’d just finished the show a couple months before in Vegas and it was hard to train over there. When I came to Brazil, I didn’t feel like the camp was really good. I feel more powerful, more explosive and more confident now. I’m more focused on what I’m doing and I’ve got my sparring partners and been able to train the way I wanted. I feel this camp is better than the last one and I know Frank’s improved since the last time I fought him, but I’m in shape and I’m ready to go and I’m excited to fight.
• Being healthy is great… My wrestling is snapping now and it’s easier to get the single, double legs and body locks that put my neck in jeopardy. It’s tough to get my wrestling back to that level again. My wrestling is not as good but my boxing is better. I’ve been in this game almost 15 years now and my body has taken some damage. Cardio-wise, my timing for my boxing and my kickboxing, I think I’ve done it for this fight and I’ve done it the right way.
Photo: Francis Specker