UFC 128: Jon Jones And Mauricio 'Shogun' Rua View Themselves As Underdogs

I'm not sure Jon Jones understands how betting lines work. They'd over hype Jones to get action on a bet if there wasn't much action, but the lines aren't out of whack. But that's neither here nor there. The upset is a little more common in MMA and always comes with a little "see, I told you so". Given that both men are probably hearing questions about their ability to perform against a great foe and both are trying to psyche themselves up, both men believe they are the underdogs at UFC 128:

"The fact that I'm the favorite, I think that's baloney," Jones said on Wednesday's media call. "I think the reason that I'm the favorite is oddsmakers are very smart and they probably think I'm going to lose. I think it's a smart strategy on the oddsmakers' part by making me the favorite. So the fact that I'm the favorite actually means that they think I'm going to lose. That's the way I'm looking at it. I feel as if I'm the underdog. Shogun's beaten lots of big names."

You might think that Rua, who knocked out Lyoto Machida last May to claim the 205-pound belt, would be a little annoyed to see himself listed as the underdog against a 23-year-old with less than three years experience as a professional. Not so, said Rua, who remarked that he completely understood why oddsmakers might be siding with the younger fighter.

"I actually understand that people think he's the favorite for the fight because he has been winning all his fights easily," Rua said via a translator. "I certainly think he is rightfully the favorite for the fight. I understand why people think that and how they view that, and I truly consider myself the underdog."

I say whatever they need to make the fight itself compelling and to achieve clear victory is the most important consideration, but it's times like these where the humility is over the top that I long for Ricardo Mayorga.

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