Lyoto Machida earns a shot at the title - "The Dragon is Back!"Posted on August 4, 2012, 11:20 PM by Mike Searson
The UFC on Fox 4 card made up for the major disappointment that was UFC 149. Going into this event, UFC President Dana White promised that whomever won in the most spectacular fashion in the Main Event (Shogun Rua vs. Brandon Vera and Lyoto Machida vs. Ryan Bader) at the Staples Center would go on to face the winner of Dan Henderson vs. Jon Jones at the upcoming UFC 151 for a shot at the Light Heavyweight Title. The card ended with a pair of major knockouts by Mauricio "Shogun" Rua and Lyoto "The Dragon" Machida.
That left a tough decision for White, because both men came through with efforts worthy of a title shot.
White confirmed at the end of the evening, though, that it was Lyoto Machida who had earned the chance. "The Dragon" knocked out Bader with a big right hand as Bader rushed him (making history as he was the first man to knock out the former Arizona State wrestling star) at 1:32 of the second round.
Speaking to the media at the post-fight presser, White said: "Everything I've seen from Lyoto Machida shows me that he wants this more than Shogun does. Shogun Rua hasn't shown me that he wants it like Machida does. What I can tell you is that he wants it badly. Now he's got it, so we'll see."
Immediately after his fight Machida said: "I think I successfully controlled the entire fight. I changed my stance back and forth from southpaw as often as possible to keep him guessing. I was just looking to counter when he made mistakes, and that's how I was able to finish him. 'The Dragon' is back. I lost my last fight, but I feel better than ever and I’m ready to fight for the title again."
This was Machida's first victory since he defeated Randy Couture at UFC 129 in Toronto, Canada last January via KO by front kick that him earned Knockout of the Night honors. He has since lost once to current Light Heavyweight champ Jon Jones this past December at UFC 140.