With Jon Jones Injured, Lyoto Machida Calls for Title Elimination Fight with Alexander Gustafsson

April 30, 2013
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Lyoto Machida UFC 157 Pre 9-478x270Everybody wants to fight Alexander Gustafsson… or so it seems.

UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, shortly after his victory over Chael Sonnen on Saturday night, said that he would like to fight the lanky Swede. And now, so does No. 1 contender Lyoto Machida.

Although Machida is considered next in line in the UFC’s 205-pound division, Jones has already defeated him, so says he’d rather fight Gustafsson next.

“I’ve fought Lyoto Machida before, and I fight for the love of the sport,” said Jones. “I fight for the people that support me, but I also fight to prove critics wrong.

“A lot of people believe that I have been successful because I appear to be larger than my opponents.  And with Alexander Gustafsson that would be no more. So fighting Alexander Gustafsson, a guy who is six-feet-six or six-five, pretty long arms himself, long legs; I think that would be a great thing and that’s who I’d love to fight next.”

Jones, however, suffered a broken toe on Saturday night that should keep him sidelined for the next couple of months. Both Machida and Gustafsson are in the right time frame for their next fights, so putting the two together would make sense, a concept not lost on Machida.

“I would like to fight before the title, maybe, because I don’t want to wait for long time. I need to fight,” said Machida in an interview for Fuel TV.

“I’m interested in this (Gustafsson) fight because now I think is a good idea to put Gustafsson against me. He’s a No. 2 contender; I’m a No. 1 contender.”

Machida believes it only makes sense to put the two together with the winner getting the next shot at Jones, once the champ returns from his injury. And the former light heavyweight champion is ready to go.

“(I’m ready to fight) as soon as possible.”


  • bajafox

    Not a bad idea, should be on FOX though

    • Jon Mendelsohn

      I disagree. This is pay per view material. Both Machida and Gustafsson are very good. Just not good enough to beat either Jones or Andreson Silva.

      • bajafox

        Personally, I don’t think Gustafsson has the fan base to headline a PPV with Machida, even Machida probably wouldn’t sell many since he’s been marketed as one of the most “elusive” fighters in the UFC. This belongs on FOX and it would expose Alexander to a larger fan base than those who throw down $45 to watch a PPV. If he wins in dramatic fashion, people will pony up for Jones vs. Gusafsson

        • Supaman

          Not unless Machida v. Gustafsson is the co-main event.

          If Andy isn’t going to get the next title shot… thereby cutting in front of both Machida & Gustaffson, then this fight makes sense as title contender match.

          The headlining main event is usually a title fight, so if Machida / Gustafsson was coupled w/ any other title fight, then this could definitely be a PPV headliner.

          Otherwise, this fight would easily headline any non-ppv card.

      • onehitwonder

        what are you, a call girl??

        • Red Foo

          how much?

  • mac bolan

    Looks like the stars are aligning for fans and everyone! I predict Big Money and a Superfight brewing up!!

    • Aaron St.Pierre

      Stars are aligning for fans? Machida is somehow a fan favorite all of sudden? The dude just sits and waits for a counterpunch. It’s almost as boring as watching anyone from the Greg Jackson camp.

      • Sir_Roy

        That’s karate. And it’s extremely effective. Explosive strikes and counter strikes while avoiding damage.

        Henderson notwithstanding, Machida’s had some exciting fights and when he does lunge in for the kill, he throws some nice explosive and exciting combos together.

        • urdooomb

          That is NOT karate.

          People somehow believe that all karate guys are elusive counter-strikers.

          It’s just Lyoto. He has mastered the counterstriking game.

          • Sir_Roy

            You’re wrong. His striking technique is largely anchored in Shotokan Karate … helping him perfect his “hit and run” technique. While he’s definitely developed his own unique style of MMA, his counter striking without doubt owes its roots to this form of karate.

            While I have never practiced Shotokan Karate myself, and will never pretend to be an expert, this information has been substantiated from Machida himself. I’ll take his word over yours.

          • urdooomb

            umm…even in shotokan there are guys that are more aggressive than Machida.

          • Sir_Roy

            Not trying to be antagonistic or anything, but you sound exactly like someone who has absolutely no idea what he’s talking about.

            A comment like that should stand as a perfect example of “talking out one’s arse”.

      • Cptmats

        There is nothing boring about Machida !

        • Hacker Beyondthepale

          Except, you know, how he fights.

          • urdooomb

            nope. He is entertaining.

          • Cptmats

            Perhaps you should try described video for the visually impaired !

      • Monkey Bytes

        Ask Rashad how boring he is…he didn’t go to sleep from boredom!

      • urdooomb


        What are you talking about? Machida is no longer a decision eeker. He goes for the kill.

  • MMA Fan

    Props to Lyoto for stepping up and requesting a good fight.

    No props to GSP for dodging Silva and Jones.

    • Smarter than you

      how is GSP dodging Jones? dumbass lol

      • Rigo Tavar

        Bro, GSP has been ducking Andre the Giant too. Like a punk.

    • Rigo Tavar

      Yeah bro. GSP has been ducking Andre the Giant too. Like a punk.

      • GSP is also ducking The Rock and Mike Tyson AND of course Yuri Boyka!!!

    • Didn’t GSP step up and ask to fight Diaz? And don’t tell me DIaz isn’t a tough fight.

    • GSP Sucks

      GSP is doding Cain too. Makes me sick.

      • urdooomb

        good one. I think it’s more about GSP not admitting the truth, namely that he is not interested in fighting Silva because of the size difference.

        • Sir_Roy

          Actually, GSP has been ultra clear about not fighting Silva at 185 precisely because of the size difference – stating so time and time again.

          Everyone’s been knocking him for it trying to intimate they were somehow close in size when this is far, far from the case.

          Not sure which interviews you’ve been listening to …

      • Sir_Roy

        How does someone “dod” someone? Sounds brutal.

    • uncle

      The WW division is full of talent unlike the MW division where Silva destroyed everybody now
      he is bored with his division and wants GSP
      to move up in weight to fight him there still a lot
      of talent and unfinished business in WW first
      before GSP entertains the super fight

      • urdooomb

        Trust me, it is not because Silva is bored.
        He would be very happy to stay in that division and destroy every mediocre LHW that turned MW.

        And other than Hendrick, I am not sure if anyone else poses a threat to GSP at WW.

        GSP WILL NOT fight Silva. Silva WILL NOT fight Jones. GSP would love to fight Benson. Silva would love to fight GSP.

      • Lucas Freire

        It was common sense saying that the LHW division was the most stacked,with the greatest fighters…Until Jon Jones came and defeated every one in a dominant fashion. Now it’s a division of washed up past prime guys.
        See my point? The problem is not the division,the problem is the extremely dominating champion. You may say GSP is dominant,and YES HE IS! But you don’t say WW division is full of noobs because he doesn’t finish fights like Jones or Anderson. There’s nobody on WW as talented as GSP,maybe Condit but his TDD is lame. The same thing on MW,maybe Belfort,but it’s a strikers chance against the King of Strikers.

      • Sir_Roy

        GSP “moving up” to fight Anderson, would remain a GSP fighting outside his natural weight class all the same. Moving up to fight a huge MW who is actually more at home fighting at LHW is an unrealistic, and unfair, expectation anyway one looks at it.

    • Kris-tyahn

      MMA Fan: Shouldn’t you actually be somewhat knowledgable in MMA to be a fan?!? B/C stating that GSP is dodging Silva & Jones makes you look pretty idiotic. 1st of all Silva challenged a much smaller opponent (which NEVER happens in any fighting sport, except in Silva’s case, b/c we all know he likes to fight smaller & weaker opponents/MW or big slow BUMS @ LHW with ZERO wrestling). Silva is 30-40lbs heavier than GSP, has 4″ height adv., and he has a 2″ reach adv.. Not to mention he wants GSP to fight at a weight he’s never fought before.
      FYI: MMA Fool, Silva told Dana he can make 170lbs, so what’s he waiting for?!? GSP said he’d gladly fight Silva or anyone @ 170lbs. Silva also fought @ 168lbs. Maybe Silva shouldn’t say s*** he can’t do, like make 170lbs. Wonder what idiots like you would say if GSP challenged Ben Henderson & asked him to move up & fight him, eventhough GSP is the one who called him out?!? Last time I checked, if you call someone out, you dare the one who needs to be inconvinienced, not the guy you are calling out.

      • Lucas Freire

        You really want to compare Pride Silva with UFC Silva? I mean,really? Silva fought at 168lbs how many years ago? He now packs over 210 pounds off season. I don’t agree with any of these “superfights” bs. It’s only a way to earn more money. Why is it impossible to exist one best fighter on each division? This “p4p discussion” in my opinion in non sense.
        Sure,you can compare Fedor with Cain,or even Cain to Jones to some extent,but how would someone compare Cain to Aldo for instance?

      • TheTruth

        Jon Jones is WAY to BIG and to STRONG for LHW and YET he fights MIDDLEWEIGHTS !!! How about that !

        Jon Jones should move to HW and prove that he can beat heavyweights. He relies mostly on his size and power.

        You extend your 85 inch reach against your opponent with a 74 inch reach, do some fancy moves this distance allows you to, without actually being even close of KOing someone in the standup, despite the unreal reach advantage (!). And then you use the opportunity in the clinch where you dwarf your opponent with your size and overpower him into a win?
        That’s lame. Jones has shown nothing so far other than bullying smaller guys.

  • GSP was right when he said he needs to fight the new people in the division since he had over 18 months off between fights. He needs to fight Hendrix first before there is any talk of talking Silva. Silva is way bigger compared to GSP anyway, and there is no way it would be a fair fight for him.

    • Sir_Roy

      Agreed. But how did GSP get into this thread … again? Completely unrelated.

  • Machida is such a beast asking for Gustaf. I am a big fan of Gustaf but I don’t get why he is in line when Phil Davis defeated him by submission and his only loss is a decision to Rashad Evans. I want to see Phil Davis get a top guy next, he deserves to be in the mix. Well if Machida wins Jones is going to have to rematch him. Maybe Davis can fight someone else in the mean time and be next or backup in case of injury to anyone.

    • urdooomb

      Well, the UFC needs new blood. And Phil Davis is not the most exciting fighter. Phil Davis is always being forced to fight new comers and no bodies.

      People want to see JBJ against a guy his size.

      • I want Tyrone Spong to come to the UFC but right now he’s over in WSF. The UFC is in need of a high level kickboxer like him. There are a lot of interesting fights to come but like you said, the UFC needs new blood.

        • MuayThaiFood

          What makes you think Tyrone Sponge is ready for the UFC? He’s got one MMA fight under his belt. He’s a high level kickboxer for sure but look at Semmy Schilt’s MMA record and he’s still ranked #1 in the world in kickboxing. He’s beaten nobody of consequence in MMA bouts. He’s not ready for the UFC yet and he sure doesn’t belong in the conversation of LHW title challengers.

          • He brings something different to the table with his high level striking. He works with Rashad Evans for his wrestling. The guy went to decision against Overeem. I know he has a lot more to do in MMA but as urdooomb was saying; we need new blood. Just sharing an opinion after all that’s what we’re all here for.

          • MuayThaiFood

            I’d like to see him in the UFC too if he get’s his groundwork up to the level where he can actually use his striking skills but until then it’s just going to be disappointing for him and his fans.

          • He really needs better fights. I understand he’s new to MMA but he’s a high level striker that’s working wit a lot of big names in the Blackzilians.

    • Ross Dempsey

      That decision to Rashad showed a lot of weaknesses in Phil’s game. Actually taking the time to polish his game is a smart move for Phil Davis

  • laleggenda27

    Good fight. Gus has only beaten one top 10 guy, so a win versus a top 5 contender in Machida would solidify his spot as the top challenger. And if Machida wins, it would be good experience against a striker with similar dimensions to Jones. Make it happen.

    • Lucas Freire

      Isn’t TeHuna on the Top10 right now? He also defeated him.

      • laleggenda27

        That was more than two years ago. Te Huna wasn’t even sniffing the top 20 back then. James is now on a 4 fight win streak. However, the best guy he’s beaten is Joey Beltran, which explains why he’s still not ranked. I generally root for Te Huna, but he’s not there yet.

        • Lucas Freire

          Yeah,I know,I also disagree with his positioning on the Top10,as in my view you have to beat some top10 to become one of them but up until the aggregation of Mousasi,he was considered a top10 fighter. But all in all I agree 100% with you

  • Jon Mendelsohn

    I have a feeling that Machida will win this one. Gustafsson is a definite underdog. Machida is good enough to give Anderson Silva a good fight in a losing effort. I believe he is the 3rd best light heavyweight, if we include Silva. 2nd without Silva. The best, if Jones is forced to retire due to the toe injury, and Silva remains a middleweight.

  • Al

    nobody is going to beat Jones right now. Not any of the fighters currently fighting. We need new blood something of a prodigy to do so.

    Machida is an excellent fighter, but Jon Jones is better.

    Whatever the outcome even if Machida fights Gustafasson and wins, he is still going to lose to Jones.

    We need a new prodigy.

    • TheTruth

      What was impressive about a heavyweight beating a middleweight with a broken hand who could only resort to pulling guard on him?

      And what was impressive about a guy with am 85″ reach losing a striking battle against a small LHW with a 74″ reach, where the size mismatch was so big (11″ in reach, 3″ in height, 30lbs in weight) that all it took to win the fight was just grab the small Machida?

  • Mark McDowall

    Props to Lyoto for calling out Gustoffsan but honestly…Im sick of Shogun’s and Michida’s and Hendo’s being talked about in the title picture. We all know the outcome of these fights so whats the point of paying $50 to buy the card.

  • ned sto

    Machida did the right thing calling out Gustafsson, if he wins the bout, he is most likely to get his title shot/rematch.

    But I’d rather not see that happen. Jones already beat him, correction: Finished him. So even if Machida won, it only calls for an immediate rubber match. Which is getting tiresome. Soon they will have to change the rules such that all championship challengers will enter into a best two out of three fight series. ( semi serious sarcasm there )

    Let Gustafsson fight Mousassi, if he wins, he gets his title shot. If he loses? well, Let Machida fight for the belt or fight Mousassi himself depending on how long Jones is out. That’s if Mousassi isn’t fleeing the LHW division.

    As for Machida looking to stay busy fighting someone other than Gustafsson. I say put him against Davis.

    • Served

      this rambling was ridiculous…

      first of all, you go on about how Machida shouldn’t get the next title shot, but then you say Gustafsson should fight Mousasi next and Machida might as well fight for the title…

      also: you say Machida shouldn’t get to fight Jones again, just b/c he got finished the first time… even though Machida is the only one who ever rocked Jones on the feet; and also won the 1st rd. (regardless of official scorecards which were 2-1).
      But by this logic…. Cain shouldn’t have had a rematch against Dos Santos b/c he got KO’ed in little over a minute the first time they fought. We all know how the rematch actually went.

      bottom line: Machida has earned his way back to another title shot and is more than deserving to be a challenger. And he should only get props for calling out Gustafsson as next fight since Jones is injured.

      • ned sto

        I said, ” I’d rather not see that happen” I didn’t ramble on why Machida shouldn’t get the shot. And I stated why. This rematch isn’t coming because it was a 5 round split decision like Edgar’s title fights.

        Gustafsson was supposed to fight Mousasi and didn’t, so why not make that happen? Jones called out Gustafsson, but if he loses to Mousasi it would be odd to give him a title shot, so by default in my present opinion let Machida fight Jones.

        As for the HW division, that is a different animal. Cain was clearly the #2 guy, with no promising new blood in that division, the very next fight went to Mir, which was bad, he only had the slightest chance to win. And then Cain got his much deserved rematch. But that division is in the same pickle. Junior is one fight away from getting his re/rematch because there are no other logical candidates except Hunt and Nelson.
        Its an unequal comparison. Gustaffson is perceived to be bring some things against Jones has has yet to see in any of his Championship challengers. Height, a fresh face, youth, and leg reach, his arm reach not really being that significant as Jones’ is.

        Machida may have earned his way to a rematch, but arguing that he won 1 round, the first round Jones ever lost is weakened by the fact that he didnt’ make it through the second round. If it was a 49-46 decision that would be different. In addition, Machida hit Jones, but hardly rocked him or had him in much trouble. Machida couldn’t/didn’t capitalize on it.

        Why does he deserve props for calling out Gustaffson? I don’t really see that as a tough fight for Machida, I see it as a smart play to neutralize the fighter Jones is requesting.


    Also make winner of Hendo- Evans fight Cormier at 205 & Mousassi vs Phil Davis

    • Collideoverme

      Yup. Tons of options and Machida has some work cut out. I’d rather see Gustafsson vs Mousassi first and Davis vs the winner of Hendo vs Evans. I’d rather see Machida cut to 185.

    • Truth

      no way. If Cormier can make 205, he gets immediate title shot. Dana White has even said the same thing.

  • TheTruth


    There are big and weak guys (Freakshow) and there are big and strong guys (Jon Jones).
    Not any tall guys is AS strong. That’s the point.
    And it’s not about the weight either. You can weigh the same or even more but STILL be LOT weaker.
    So it’s not about weigh and size NECESSARILY but in Jon Jones case it is which DOESN’T mean that ANY guy who is as tall and as heavy as Jon Jones is as strong and as powerfull as Jon Jones. THAT’s THE POINT.