Rashad Evans’ First Priority is a Title Shot, but the Waiting Games are Over

September 5, 2011

Rashad Evans

When Rashad Evans was on the sidelines waiting for then champion Maurcio “Shogun” Rua to get healthy, a lot of people criticized his choice to sit out as opposed to staying active with more fights.

When Evans’ time finally did come for the title shot, he suffered a training injury of his own that pushed him out of the fight with Rua, and delayed his comeback even further.

Rua eventually lost the title to current champion Jon Jones, but when an injury forced Jones to delay his match-up with Evans, the former Michigan State wrestler was done waiting.

Evans took a fight against Tito Ortiz at UFC 133 and after being out of action for more than a year, he came back looking better than ever. Stopping Ortiz with strikes in the second round of their bout, Evans earned yet another shot at the light heavyweight title. Now he waits for UFC 135 and the fight between Jones and challenger Quinton “Rampage” Jackson.

The biggest difference for Evans this time, however, is that while his goal of regaining the UFC light heavyweight title stays the same, an extended waiting period is something he won’t go through again.

“Rashad’s committed to fighting. If the title shot was a year away, I’m sure Rashad would take another fight. He’s not going to put his career on hold a year, but we don’t anticipate that being the case. I hope that’s not the case. Rashad would like to fight for the title next,” Evans’ manager Glenn Robinson told MMAWeekly Radio.

“But like and reality are always two different things. If the reality is that he can’t, he’ll still go out there and he’ll fight. You stack ’em up and he’ll knock ’em down. It don’t matter who the opponent is.”

It was almost like a hungry man getting to eat dinner, because Evans had been out of action for so long. Once he got back in the cage, he satisfied his desire to go out there and prove he was one of the elite athletes at 205 pounds.

Make no mistakes about it, Evans has every intention of sitting cage side for Jones vs. Jackson, and happily challenging the winner as soon as they’re healthy and ready to go.

But extended injuries and time off are just part of the sport, so if it means Evans has to sit out another year to fight the winner from UFC 135, it’s just not something he’s going to do this time around.

“Hopefully, it will be for the title shot and he’ll get his opportunity to reclaim what belongs to him,” Robinson stated. “If some reason the fight is delayed to a point where he has to take another opponent, he’ll take another opponent. The title shot is his first choice, it is his first desire, but more so that anything he wants to fight.”

Rashad Evans definitely wants to be known as champion, but his first priority is to be known as a fighter.

Evans is expected to be in Denver for the light heavyweight title fight between Jon “Bones” Jones and Quinton “Rampage” Jackson on Sept. 24 at UFC 135.

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  1. Only way Rashad doesn’t get KO’d against Rampage or Jones (prob gonna be Rampage) is if he runs his coward ass off the way he did last time he fought Rampage !

    • by run away do you mean fight a strategic fight and put the fight in the realm where you are better and most capable of winning…if that’s your definition of running then yes i agree…anyone athleticism on his feet to just strike to set up take downs…it’s not a secret train for it and try to stop… it’s that simple but until anyone can stop why should rashad change his style he is more athletic than rampage which was clear as day in their first fight so why would you not use your athletcism to put the fight in your best area and avoid any damage or punishment…it’s not running away it is called being smart

      • i meant everyone knows rashad is going to use his athleticism on his feet to strike and set up his take downs on the third line down

      • `NO, its called running and hugging ! He fought scared ! And he fought Rampage the Movie star ! This, in shape, motivated Rampage will destroy Rashad ! He should have never had the belt in the first place ! Rampage got very lazy and lost his belt to a gate keeper, Only reason Rashad was a champ ! Rashads best wins are over Tito, Old Chuck, Shawn Salmon and Forrest…..not a very impressive resume ! Hes a joke !

        • WTF R U talking about? Ughhh not sure Y you hate so much, but @ least most Evans haters give him credit for being a very good fighter. I dont expect U 2 like him, b/c alot of people DO NOT! But the guy is a great fighter PERIOD! After seing him Vs.Tito 2, Evans looked incredible 4 being out over a year & figthing a “healthy”, in shape & fight ready Ortiz proved the “new” Evans is 4 real & quite possibly better than when he was with Jackson (key word here is… possibly). I think U forgot Evans beat Thiago Alves & Rampage & not 2 mention the “new” Tito, who was possibly better than the “old” Tito he fought 4 yrs ago.

          As I said dislike him all U want, I have no problem with that, but @ least give the man credit 4 what he has done 16W-1L (to Lyoto). I like Evans (thats right I’m one of very few), I’ve especially respected Evans a hell of alot more after his stint on TUF Vs. Rampage, which is ironic b/c Rampage looked like a complete dick (if I’m not mistaken didnt Rampage miss one of his fighters/teams fights?).

          If I were 2 guess/pick a coach between Rampage & Evans on who would have been there for “ALL the wrongs reasons” & only care about himself, I would have picked Evans. Yet Evans was the complete opposite of what I had expected. EX: Evans went to console & congratulate the fighter who had just lost… the thing is, it was Rampages fighter who LOST, so instead of being a REAL man/good coach/good person Rampage decides 2 leave his own teammate/fighter in the ring, devastated & crying b/c his “dream” is all but over, but does Rampage give a fuck?!? HELL NO!!! Evans showed a HELLL of alot more class than Rampage did in TUF.

          Dont get me wrong I like Rampage, but Evans really showed his true colors on TUF. Which is where most morons -like you- make the mistake about Evans… Evans “acts” like an ass hole, but thats it, he pretends 2 B a cocky arrogant dick head 4 the fans/media/cameras etc. When it comes 2 him figthing, he knows
          -ve attention/publicity is MUCH BETTER & profitable than no attention/publicity.

          I think Evans rubed alot of people the wrong way in his fight Vs. Forrest (when Evans grabbed his “jock” towards Forrest midway through the fight). It wasnt personal towards Forrest, Evans was losing the fight, so Evans did what any & all of us would have done in his position… do ANYTHING 2 distract or piss off your oponent (who knows if Forrest even noticed it or even gave shit). Was it in poor taste? YES – did he win the belt? YES! thats all that matters, isnt it?

          Evans will KTFO of Rampage if they fight again, mark my words. Yeah Rampage was “Mr. Hollywood” when he fought Evans, but the “new” Evans looked 100X better than he did in the past. Hollywood Rampage has been fighting for quite sometime now & I dont expect much diff Vs. Jon Jones, to tell you the truth – I dont think it really matters b/c Rampage is going ZZZzzzZZZ

          • Wow you really are a noob !

          • “Evans is a great fighter” ROFLMAO !

          • Cptmats: Yeah b/c Evans isnt a “great fighter”?!? LMFAO – looks who the NOOB is moron – I guess I can understand your point, since Evans has a “mediocre” 16W-1L record, wow what was I thinking? He’s only a former Champ as well, but anyone can become a champ, especially in the “weak” LHW division right? Just like anyone can beat 4 former UFC Champs (Ortiz, Liddell, Griffin & Rampage), I guess his 10 fight win streak, 13 fight undefeated streak to win the LHW title is something you could easily do right? b/c if Evans isnt a “great fighter” thats b/c you are & you are training for the UFC with an undefeated record. I guess Evans looked “terrible” Vs Ortiz? I’m not talking about the fact that he beat Ortiz, its the fact that he didnt look like a fighter who went 14 months without figthing & returning from injury, but you are right I’m the “NOOB” b/c Evans isnt a “great fighter”, well the stats & his numbers prove you WRONG… AGAIN!

            Your not even worth being called a “NOOB” b/c that would imply that you know some general info about the topic at hand/MMA, which you DO NOT! Your comment & STUPIDITY proves that to be 100% TRUE! As I said, people dont have to like Evans, but to say he isnt a “great fighter” is just plain ignorant & moronic – right moron?

            BTW: for a guy who isnt a “great fighter” he’s been the #1 contender a few times over the last year & a half, in the BEST division in the UFC, but you’re right your FACTS & valid points are undeniable. You got me! FuCkInG iDiOt

  2. So give Rashad to Shogun or Machida, they would both finish Rashad quick.

    • Rashad doesn’t want to fight Shogun or Lyoto because he would get KTFO.

      Rashad wants to prolong is MMA career and make as much money as possible. He doesn’t necessarily care about being the #1 fighter.

      If he loses to Shogun/Lyoto, Rashad will no longer be a contender in the UFC. He will be like Forrest, a solid gate-keeper.

      If Rashad loses to Jon Jones, he could still go fight Shogun/Lyoto for another shot at the title.

      The true LHW ranking:

      1. Jon Jones
      2. Shogun
      3. Lyoto
      4. Rashad
      5. Rampage

      It makes perfect sense for Rashad to go after a rematch with Lyoto or a contender fight with Shogun. But no….he wants none of that.

      • more like
        1 Rampage
        2 Machida
        3 Jones
        4 Shogun
        5 Rashad

        • more like
          1 Rampage
          2 Machida
          3 Jones
          4 Shogun
          5 Rashad

          OMFG – LMFAO Rampage is the #1 LHW fighter but hes not the champ & hasnt been the Champ in 3 yrs & went to decision with “#1 Contender Matt Hamill”. WOW you are alot more stupid than I thought, you have no right to call anyone a NOOB after reading TWO of the dumbest posts on MMAWEEKLY history, on the same article & by the same fucking LOSER!

          And then he has Lyoto @ #2 after losing 2 of 3 & his lone win came agaisnt a 48 yr old man. LOLOLOLOL okay DUMMY time to go color lil girl. Rampage #1 & Lyoto #2 BAHAHAHAHAHAH. its called GOOGLE maybe you should try it sometime & do some research b4 making the most uneducated comments in MMA posting history.

          To top it all off, he has The Champ/Jones & Former Champ/Rua @ #3 & #4 – you are an outdated douche bag. What an idiot!

  3. “Hopefully, it will be for the title shot and he’ll get his opportunity to reclaim what belongs to him,”…

    How did that ever “belong” to him? He got his ass beat (and bad) and lost the title. He never held onto it for long, so I would hardly say it “belongs” to him. Retard Evans will not wear gold again. I agree with Madona: Give him Shogun or Machida, and he will be finished quickly!

  4. To keep it real, Rashad would most likely beat Shougun & Machida. I don’t care for Rashad but he is a hell of a fighter. Questionable chin indeed, but he is very athletic & does have elite wrestling…he did nearly get KO’d by Ramp in fight 1, gassed & indeed “running” in the 3rd rd! However, Shogun is a slouch, if Forrest had fought a smart fight & just kept his distance using foot work & kept Hua chasing him, he would have gassed after rd 1 like always, excluding Machida/Hua 1, & Forrest would have out worked him the final 2 rounds. & that’s what Rashad will do. I do believe Forrest’s heart isn’t in fighting anymore & should take a very long break & decide if this is what he wants. You can not be elite w/o heart! Rashad would out wrestle Machida in the rematch & most likely win on points. He wouldn’t take the chance trading again. I can’t stand to watch a lay & pray fight like every 25 min. GSP fight, but in this game it’s better to use your strength’s & get a W then to fight someone else’s fight in order to try to impress people & lose. I really don’t like watching GSP, he is very boring & Couldn’t finish a 4 piece nugget but, he wins. I hope Diaz beats him…but GSP is a lot bigger & stronger & will probably win another 25 min. decision.
    Bones…we have never seen his chin tested yet & we will definately get to see that in the Rampage fight! We also haven’t seen 1 punch KO power from Jones & we all know Ramp has it in both hands! So we will see! I just don’t think Ramp has a very good chance if he is put on his back! Rashad however has a very under rated jits game and could sub Jones from bottom. Bones is just so long, when he gets on top, it’s very difficult to defend from bottom. Only chance is an arm bar I dont think Bones will get triangled. Anyway no matter what it will be an exciting heart pumping fight & if Ramp connects b4 he gets put on his back…we will have a new champ…if not, could be a long night for Ramp!

    • Rampages wrestling is about 20x better than your giving him credit for, Def better than Jones ! Hendo is a two time Olympic Wrestler and Rampage took him down several times and controlled him with ease ! Rashad is a good Wrestler not great but good, but thats about it !

  5. Shogun & Rashad both should drop to 185.

    • I actually concur Evans could easily fight @ MW/185 lbs & he could be dangerous.

  6. OMG thats sooo long….. something the ladies never have, dont & never will say about me or to me =*( sigh! BAHAHAHA

  7. @Mr.Adidas…i’m sure they don’t…& whats a bahahaha dork? @ CPTMATS, Ramp doesn’t have near the wrestling ability Jones or Rashad have….he took Hendo down a couple times but hell he out weighs Hendo by 20-25 lbs on fight day…Jake Shields took Hendo down over & over & over & over & kept him there for 4 rounds & is no where near the wrestler Rashad or Ramp is. If Rashad isn’t a great wrestler why does every opponent find themselves on their back? Plus he is fighting out of his weight class. He won T.U.F. as a heavy weight, won the LHW strap, but is a true MW! Ramp doesn’t have near the wrestling of either of them….& being a fighter from Tn myself, Ramp is one of my favs, but its true!

    • Sry,but your dead wrong ! Rampage will out wrestle Jones, You’ll see !

      @mraddidas,stop talkin, you sound stupid !
      Rampage will KO Skin and Bones Jones and you will eat your noobish words !

    • BAHAHAHAH is laughing you fuckign dummy! BAHAHAHAH for actually asking & not knowing dork!

      OMG maybe if you stoped sucking on moms tity you wouldnt ask such fucking idiotic comments & not look like a 5 yr old chimp missing a half dozen chromozomes.

  8. hell Shields is a WW!

  9. also Mr. Adidas Evans never fought Thiago Alves. Alves is a WW 170…Evans is 205. So anything you say is irrelivant, obviously you know jack shit about MMA!

  10. also Mr. Adidas Evans never fought Thiago Alves. Alves is a WW 170…Evans is 205. So anything you say is irrelivant, obviously you know jack shit about MMA! Bahahahahaha dumbass

    • BAHAHAH yeah b/c I got the name mixed up which alot of people do with those two fighters Thiago Silva & Thiago Alves….. the fact that you based my knowledge b/c I made a mistake of two similar names proves just how intelliigent you really are NOT! Everything else you read is mostly fact, but since I did mix up two similar names I can understand your stupidity, I mean ASSumption you idiot!

      Do the world but especially your parents a HUGE favor & kill yourself LOSER!

      BAHAHAHAH DORK! DORK! DORK! what a fag!

  11. Here is what is going to happen…Jones is probably going to beat Rampage…if he doesn’t it will be a counter hook that puts him away if he’s lucky…Rampage is powerful striker but not a MMA anymore…IMO

    Rashad fought Machida and was utterly destroyed…he did nothing in that fight except for have decent defense in round 1…when Machida decided it was over it was simply over and good night for Rashad…

    I would like to see Machdia Shogun 3 if it falls into place…not just un naturally…

    and what are you talking about? Tito beat Bader on a lucky hit followed by a smooth transition to submission…Luck followed by swift movement..he could not do it again and he is not even on Forrests level as a fighter…

    here is the breakdown IMO and this is leavin Anderson Silva out because I think he could beat everyone on this list with ease with maybe the exception fo Jones..idk what would happen in that but he’d prolyl KO him in my opinion…

    Shogun vs. Rashad…winner fights Machida and that winner fights for the title…I think Silva should be in the mix but that is unlikely if so…he should fight whoever and that winner gets the title shot.


    • Some good points, some stuff I dont agree with but like you said thats your opinion, just like everyone else on here.
      I would love to see Anderson fight Rua, I think Rua would finish Silva @ LHW!

      Silva would NOT touch Jon Jones @ LHW, not even close (IMO)! I think Jones is a bigger & better version of Silva @ LHW! If Silva could beat everyone on your list @ LHW, then he would have moved up to LHW a long time ago, I think he knows figthing & dominating an EZ MW division is one thing, but moving up & fighting “WORLD class” fighters @ LHW is a completely different story.

      This is why I want Silva to move up to LHW so bad, time for him to stop wasting his time & skill @ MW & let’s see if Silva is as good as he is & not just b/c the MW is very weak. Though I’d love to see Silva fight Sonnen again to see if Sonnen was “lucky” & Brian Stann – he’s one bad man with KO power in both hands!

    • BTW: your lsit is pretty accurate!

      1. Jones
      2. Rua
      3. Evans
      4. Rampage
      5. Lyoto