As the MMA world eagerly waits for this Saturday night when Quinton Jackson and Lyoto Machida step into the cage at UFC 123 the internet is full of tasty morsels of analysis and information on the fight. With the bout being such a unique style clash there is no shortage of angles one could take in discussing it and it has brought out the best from some great MMA writers. If the style clash isn't enough, the clash between the always boisterous personality of Quinton Jackson and the very reserved Machida makes for an interesting angle as well.
Over at SBNation's Bloody Elbow, Kid Nate looks back to UFC 104 and Lyoto Machida's win which signaled the end of the "Machida Era" despite his victory:
After Lyoto Machida crushed Rashad Evans at UFC 98, Joe Rogan famously declared that we had entered "the Machida era." Alas, as eras go, it was a short one. Machida faced Mauricio Rua, aka Shogun, at UFC 104 and it soon became clear that Shogun and his camp had solved the notoriously difficult puzzle presented by Machida's unique application of Shotokan karate to MMA.
Shogun moved forward relentlessly behind a tight high guard, collapsing the pocket but refusing to make the first strike -- thus depriving Machida of the counter-striking opportunities he thrives on. This forced Machida to lunge in and out looking to score with punches to the head. Everytime Machida lunged in, Shogun answered with a kick to the legs or body. Over time this wore the champ down and it was clear by the championship rounds that Rua's strategy had worked.
MMA Junkie caught up with UFC president Dana White to ask if the winner of the fight would be the new number one contender for Mauricio "Shogun" Rua's title. White was elusive on the subject:
"I don't know," he told MMAjunkie.com. "The fight has to happen first (before I decide)."
"The 205-pound division is so stacked with so many good fights," he said. "I'm waiting for this logjam to free up. [Rua's] knee is clogging this whole thing up. So once his knee is healed up, we're going to be putting on some sick 205-pound fights next year."
Rampage spoke to UFC ring announcer Bruce Buffer on his radio show and had the following to say:
This fight right here has nothing to do with money. This fight right here is all about honor and respect. Since I’ve been in the UFC, I have been all about money because quite honestly, I’ve made more money in the UFC than I ever did in other shows. It’s really easy to get beside yourself and be all about the money, all about the money. But I remember back in my Pride days, I used to just go and fight for honor. … I want to go back to my old Pride days when I used to fight to put on a show.
Finally, the UFC has been posting videos of Rampage getting ready for Machida the most recent of which can be seen here followed by Machida discussing the fight:
We will bring you much more of the best from around the internet on this very intriguing fight as well as plenty of our own analysis as UFC 123 continues to creep closer.