Within a couple hours of UFC president Dana White announcing that Lyoto Machida would get a bump up in the title shot line, agreeing to challenge UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones in the main event of UFC 140 on Dec. 10 in Toronto, the man he leapfrogged issued a statement.
That man would be “Suga” Rashad Evans, a man that has been the champ before and has been chomping at the bit for more than year to get a crack at getting the belt back.
Considering his own predicament, however, Evans was more-than-understanding that the UFC made the fight between Jones and Machida.
“After my last fight against Tito Ortiz, I dislocated my right thumb, which required it to be set back in place and held with pins. 24 hours ago, my physician removed the pins. At that time, I learned that it would require another three weeks of rehabilitation before engaging in any exercise or training that would require the use of my hand,” Evans explained on Thursday.
“Dana White and I spoke earlier today, and I fully understand his decision to put Machida against Jones for the title at UFC 140. Given the rehabilitation time I require for my dislocated thumb, I would not be 100 percent ready by Dec. 10.
“The UFC has to keep making fights that entertain the fans. I would have done the same thing as Dana in his position. I’m asking for the fans to support me as I rehabilitate my hand, and I promise I will be back fighting very quickly.”