Lyoto Machida took some time out of training at Belem, Brazil to sit down with the Brazilian site Tatame.com to discuss a variety of issues; including high praise from UFC President Dana White, his thoughts on a title shot and his opinion of new light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans. Below are some of the highlights of that interview:
Machida On Dana White’s Belief That He Will One Day Become The Best Pound-For-Pound Fighter In The World:
I’m very honored to get this kind of compliment from Dana White. He isn’t just an owner or event promoter, he also understands fighting. I’ll strive to reach his expectations along with those of my fans. I think anyone would be honored and happy to receive this kind of compliment, but I’ll work with humility to be better without thinking that I’m the best. I don’t think anything like that. Everyone has their place. I’m getting better at every fight; training a lot, gaining confidence and I think this is important for my career.
Machida On Whether He Deserves A Title Shot If He Beats Thiago Silva:
I think that if I don’t get a title shot, I’ll be very close. The light heavyweight division is getting harder every day. The fighters are strong. I believe that if I win this fight, if I’m not a candidate for the belt then I’ll train more. And I think it may even be good because I’ll get more fights and get more well-rounded. I think I deserve a chance to fight for the belt, but that’s a decision for the UFC and I’m calm about that. I believe my time will come. I’m not worried about whether it will be today or tomorrow, I just know that I’ll have a chance to get the belt.
Machida On Wanderlei Silva vs. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson:
In a fight, anything can happen. I thought Wanderlei was the favorite because he had already beaten him twice, but every day MMA grows in popularity and techniques. Even six years ago things were very different. Today it’s more strategic. If you make a little mistake you can lose the fight. The Americans are getting better; everybody wants their place in the sun, so that’s what happened. Quinton came up with a strategy that worked better that day, but I’m not saying he’s better. As for Minotauro, that day Frank Mir was better, but Minotauro will be able to turn things around. He’s still young and things will get better for him.
Machida On Rashad Evans:
Look, I think Rashad is a complete guy. He has the wrestling background, but I see some flaws in his game. I’m not worried with him now though. My focus is on Thiago. I watch, but I don’t pay much attention to the opponents that I’m not focused on. I do see some holes in his game, but I prefer not to think about that now, he’s not the one for at this time.
To read the rest of this interview with much more from Lyoto Machida, click here.
*Special thanks to Victor Piccarelli for the translation.