Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida looks to climb a tall mountain in the undefeated Eryk Anders on Saturday night at UFC Fight Night 125.
The hard-hitting Anders is a former division one college linebacker, and brings scary one punch KO power to the table, finishing six of his ten wins via knockout. Now, Anders looks to ‘legitimize his name’ with a win over Machida.
Machida, who is very much used to fighting the best the UFC has to offer, is trying to bounce back at a crucial stage in his career.
A pivotal moment
At the age of 39, Lyoto is returning after suffering a vicious first-round knockout by the hands of Derek Brunson. The battle with Brunson was the first time that Machida had stepped back in the octagon since his suspension for PED use. Prior to that, Machida was skidding on a two-fight losing streak after being finished by Luke Rockhold and Yoel Romero.
There was a time when Joe Rogan declared the start of “The Machida Era”, however since that cursed statement Lyoto began slipping from his once prominent dominance.
“The Dragon” was once one of the most exciting fighters in the UFC. His highlight reel KO’s over Rashad Evans and Randy Couture made ripples throughout the MMA world. He was considered to be one of the scariest men alive at 205 lbs, which at the time of his dominance, was one of the most talent-stacked weight classes in the UFC.
The question is can Machida turn it around this late in his career, against a hype train that is steamrolling through competition with youth, size, and power to his advantage.
One thing is apparent, Lyoto seems cool as a cucumber heading into what could be the deciding fight for what his future holds. When asked how he was dealing with the pressure of facing a young up and coming prospect, “The Dragon” didn’t seem to be too worried about it.
“Eryk is a tough opponent. He knows how to fight, he’s an undefeated fighter. But, I got used to fighting people who were undefeated.”
Lyoto Machida vs. Eryk Anders is the scheduled main event for UFC Fight Night 125 in Belem, Brazil, this Saturday, February 3.