While the light-heavyweight title shot talk has mostly centered on men like Glover Teixeira, Lyoto Machida, and of course Alexander Gustafsson as of late, Phil Davis has been steadily moving his way up the rankings since he lost to Rashad Evans last January (who’s also returned to the discussion due to his win over Dan Henderson). If Davis goes out and defeats Machida at UFC 163 on August 3rd, however, “Mr. Wonderful” will certainly be in the title shot mix.
After all, Machida is the #1 ranked contender in the UFC light-heavyweight division, and although he annoyed (or enraged) some fans with his conservative approach versus “Hendo”, this is the same man who has KO’d the likes of Ryan Bader, Randy Couture and and Evans, among others. As a result, Davis was asked about what he believes a win over Machida might achieve, while speaking to Rebellion Media’s Rick Lee recently.
“I’ll take whatever is available at that time. If it’s another top contender, that will work, but if that puts me in the top one, two, in line for the title shot, I’ll take that too.”
Of course, defeating Machida is no easy task, evidenced by the fact that only three men to date have done it, “Mauricio” Rua, “Rampage” Jackson and current champ, Jon Jones.
“Everything needs to be done right in this fight,” Davis noted. “You’ve got a guy who you can’t make a lot of mistakes against. You’ve got a crowd that’s not going to let you make a mistake and get away with it. Everything needs to be right. That right there; that’s enough pressure. I’m not going to add all these external ‘what ifs’, ‘if you don’t, you know what’s going to happen’, ‘do you know what they’ll say’, nah, forget all that. I got to win and I’ve got to beat the best “Dragon” that’s going to show up.”
It’s certainly an interesting “new guard vs. old guard” match-up, and it will be interesting to see whether Davis can put his wrestling skills to work against the former champ. If he can’t, it may be a long night for the rising light-heavyweight.
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