Fighters often times talk about how well they know their opponents. That usually stems from sitting cageside at their fights and/or watching mountains of video footage of their past fights. But Lyoto Machida and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua have taken it to a whole new level for their UFC 104 showdown.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship brought the main eventers and also Cain Velasquez and Ben Rothwell, who are meeting in a heavyweight bout, to Los Angeles on Tuesday to hold a press conference for media and fans to hype up the event.
Low and behold, with both flying in from Brazil, it was funny to find out that not only were Machida and Shogun on the same plane, but they actually sat next to one another the entire flight.
But in typical Brazilian fashion “it’s no problem, my friend.”
“To tell you the truth, Lyoto is a nice guy and we have been kind of friends for a while. We know each other for a while,” said Shogun, who actually found a little humor in the situation.
“Even though we are friends, I got very surprised to see him on the plane and, actually, sitting next to me, side-by-side, on the whole flight from Brazil to here. It was a funny situation.”
In this day and age of mixed martial artists arriving as highly regarded mainstream athletes, Shogun handled the situation with professionalism, having no problem sitting for several hours next to the man that he hopes to punch repeatedly in the face come Oct. 24 at The Staples Center.
“I think this doesn’t interfere because we are both professionals and we’re training hard. We all want the same goal, so we’re gonna do our best.”