Wednesday August 1,2012 : UFC Betting – All Four Fighters In Co-Main Event For UFC On Fox 4 In Contention For Title Shot
UFC President Dana White made sure on Monday that no fan will need to read between the lines when it comes to the co-main event matches for this Saturday’s UFC on Fox: Shogun vs. Vera card. Lyota “The Dragon” Machida will battle Ryan Bader, and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua will battle Brandon Vera in two main event matches with major title implications in the UFC light heavyweight division. White originally announced that the winner of Rua vs. Vera would get a shot at UFC Light Heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones, but after receiving a huge backlash from fans via Twitter he revised his statement to include the co-main event. As it stands, “whoever wins the most impressively on Saturday night gets the shot at the title”. White has never been shy about giving fans the fight they want to see, and in the end he made the right decision because of it.
After all, Shogun lost his title to Jones at UFC 128 via TKO, and after rebounding with a first-round knockout win over Forrest Griffin just five months later, fell again to Dan Henderson in the 2011 Fight of the Year at UFC 139. The fact that his last two losses came against the champion and current No. 1 contender ensures that if Shogun won, he would get a chance to fight for the title against a champion that he has already recently lost against. Meanwhile, Vera has lost three of his last four fights, although his unanimous decision loss to Thiago Silva was declared no contest because of a failed urine test. Still, a decision over Eliot Marshall is hardly enough to overlook losses to Randy Couture and Jones, so it simply didn’t make sense to limit the next No. 1 contender position to Shogun and Vera.
Interestingly, the resumes of Machida and Bader aren’t much better. Machida actually lost the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship to Shogun, and proceeded to lose two of his next three fights to Quinton “Rampage” Jackson and to Jones with the title on the line in his last bout. Badger has put together consecutive wins over Jason Brilz and Jackson, but that should not be enough to earn him too much respect following losses to Jones and Tito Ortiz. Those two losses were the first of Bader’s career, and while he seems like a long shot to become the next title contender, the way the stipulations for this event are set up it wouldn’t be a major upset if he got his opportunity.
The most ironic piece in this entire puzzle is that Jones has already beaten all four fighters in the co-main event, so a win over Henderson at UFC 151 will mean a rematch. Jones took to Twitter to complain about the plans when he wrote, “scratching my head”, a sentiment that White laughed off. Jones is already the youngest champion ever in the UFC, and with three consecutive title defenses already under his belt at just 25-years old, he could be destined to make history.
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