I would like to say that I plan on being more in depth from here on out on the fight breakdowns and I will only be doing the analysis on fights that I am interested in. This is for your benefit trust me because I will want to put in my best effort into these breakdowns. Without further torture I will just get on with what you want to read in the first place.
Ohhhhh man, talk about a good one folks. If you are not excited about the only individual to defeat the greatest mixed martial artist to ever grace the cage (TWICE!) to get back into action against an individual that that very well may be his kryptonite then you are no real MMA fan. Chris Weidman may just be the best fighter in the UFC and has a resume to prove it, but if you had to design a fighter to defeat him you would end up creating a fighter with a skill set identical to Lyoto Machida. Lets first look at what both fighters bring to the table in this fight and also a breakdown of the skill set of each fighter. After I hit you with all of that goodness I will attempt to predict one of the most unpredictable sports and tell you who will get their hand raised at the end of the night.
Chris Weidman 11-0 (5KO/TKO, 3 Submission, 3 Decisions)
Weidman shines when he is pressuring his opponent in either the clinch or the ground. Grappling is his game and he embraces it. The former collegiate wrestler is a monster when he is smothering from the top position. Not only is his wrestling and ground and pound outstanding, but Weidman is an exceptionally gifted submission artist as well. The combination of Weidman’s physical capability, tenacity, and technical prowess on at the ground makes him a nightmare for anyone in the middleweight division and opens his striking game up by getting his opponents so worried and focused on not going to the ground. If you have not noticed by his last couple of outings in the UFC Chris Weidman has become a more than adequate striker in the cage. His boxing has improved immensely with his combinations being produced with more haste and his more relaxed stance for faster reaction time. So, with all of this being said about Weidman and with all the proof of him being this elite; why are people still doubting him? I have heard the excuses a million times but it all boils down to this, people put asterisks beside his wins against Anderson Silva because of the circumstances that happened in those fights. The statements and the belief that he did not “really” beat Silva are absolutely ridiculous. Weidman won both of those fights on great techniques that were performed with absolute perfection. He deserves the credit for those wins because he beat Silva with a proper game plan and a better head on his shoulders. That being said his next obstacle is no easy task and the individual he has to beat may just have a little added motivation because of his fallen friend.
Lyoto Machida 21-4 (8KO/TKO, 2 Submission, 11 Decisions)
Ladies and gentleman The Dragon has everything needed to be victorious on July 5th and become a two time UFC champion. We should all know Machida’s game by now; varied unique techniques, lightning fast striking with phenomenal footwork, and amazing takedown defense is his DNA in a match. Watching Machida fight is to watch a true master at his art. Lyoto Machida’s unique style has proven to be a hassle for any opponent he faces. Not only is his unique style difficult to deal with, but Machida is finally in the weight class he should have always been and we are seeing the best Machida because of that. A long time training partner of Anderson Silva, Machida will have even more fire underneath him to defeat Chris Weidman when they step in the cage together. Will we see “The Machida Era” be resurrected in the middleweight division?
There should be no question as to who has the advantage when the fight is on the feet in this matchup. Sure, Weidman did knock out Anderson Silva and his striking does look increasingly better each time he steps into the octagon, but we are talking about him compared to Lyoto Machida. Lyoto’s frustrating elusive footwork, pin point accuracy, and unique striking style give him the advantage in striking. Striking is not new for Machida, he has been perfecting his craft his entire life. Weidman will more than likely be frustrated while trying to strike with Machida and look for an early opportunity takedown to bring the fight into his territory.
The champ has a grappling advantage in this fight and its a pretty substantial one. The problem is dragging Lyoto Machida to the ground. Lyoto Machida has exceptional takedown defense that leads to impressive strikes from the break. I will be majorly impressed with Weidman if he is able to get Machida to the ground, that would take great skill and speed to accomplish. Lets not skimp on Lyoto though, the man knows how to handle himself on the ground as well it is just a side of his game that we do not get to see often. It is a gray area of doubt that keeps me thinking that if Chris Weidman gets the fight to the ground he will dominate from the top position, inflicting tons of damage like he always does.
How do you predict an outcome of a match in the most unpredictable sport? You see the matchup analyze the strengths and weaknesses of each opponent and hope that your pick does not do one thing wrong because at this level that is all it takes to lose a match. I believe that Lyoto Machida will resurrect “The Machida Era” and use his elusive striking to deliver a decisive victory over Chris Weidman. It is not going to be easy and Machida has to be perfect to pull it off because if the momentum goes towards the champ early I do not see it ever coming back to Machida. That being said I am extremely excited to see this match. I have not been this excited for a very long time about a MMA match. Be ready for an excellent fight July 5th and remember to celebrate our country’s Independence Day to reflect on how great it is that we can watch two men get paid to beat each other up for entertainment. GOD BLESS AMERICA!
What do you think? Who will get their hand raised?