Gary A. Vasquez-US PRESSWIRE
Lyoto Machida may have lost an opportunity to fight for the UFC's light heavyweight title, but he is more than happy to re-earn it by defeating Dan Henderson. He just doesn't know when or where he'll do it. Yet.
Lyoto Machida received what he so desperately wanted: A shot at redemption against current Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. Unfortunately, the timing wasn't right and "The Dragon" passed on his chance at reclaiming his 205-pound title.
Ultimately, "Bones" went on to fight and defeat Vitor Belfort at UFC 152 and received a coaching spot on The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) opposite Chael Sonnen. The two will face off on April 27, 2013 for Jon's title in Newark, N.J.
As for Machida, though he expressed initial disdain for Zuffa's matchmaking decision, he is over his lost opportunity and Sonnen's title shot and is now looking forward to a showdown against former PRIDE champion and knockout artist, Dan Henderson.
Appearing on "The MMA Hour," Lyoto talks about the two sides to the "Jones vs. Sonnen" match up as well as saying if he wants to re-earn his title shot, he knows he has to get passed the always tough and durable Henderson:
"At the moment, I was a little upset (over Jones vs. Sonnen). But it's all good, it's passed. There's always two sides to everything. Looking at it from an athlete's perspective, Chael Sonnen might have cut across a lot of people and maybe cut the line to get a shot at the belt. But for the UFC, it might be a good thing for this fight to happen at this time. There's always two sides."
The crafty Brazilian says though he is certain "Hendo" is next on his fight list, the uncertainty as to when and where this highly-anticipated match up will go down, remains:
"This fight is expected to happen but there's no date set. We don't know yet where it's going to be or when it's going to be, but I'm very happy to be fighting Dan Henderson. It's a good fight and it's another challenge for me. If I want to fight for the belt again, I need to get through this fight first."
For now, Anaheim, Calif., seems to be the site and Feb. 23, 2013 seems to be the date.
How about it Maniacs, Who's your early pick in this intriguing match up? Can Machida get another shot at attempting to defeat Jones? Or will Henderson finally get his chance to vie for UFC gold?