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Lyoto Machida Reinvents Himself as a Trash-Talker, Kind of Freaks Us Out

(Photo courtesy of ESPN.)

The other day, Dana White called out Lyoto Machida as possibly the next in line to be "best pound-for-pound fighter in MMA" after Anderson Silva retires. After reading this interview by our pal Ben Zeidler, we wonder if White told Machida that such hype comes with a price — he has to start pretending like he has a personality. In the past, Machida has given interviews like he fights; no frills, accomplish your objective and move on. Now, things are getting a bit more colorful:

BZ: Is there anyone other than Thiago Silva that you would like to face?
LM: Give me the job and I will get it done. Rampage, Couture, Liddell, Vanderlei, Shogun, I work hard to win and will keep winning. Who thought they would see Tito with his back on the floor? Tito is a Great fighter but when he faced me, Lyoto, you know the ending.

BZ: Tell us a little bit more about your training regimens.
LM: My training is very versatile. My life is training, I just make some adaptations for each opponent. They need to worry about me. Look at my past, when I finish the fight I go dinner and have some fun and the other fighters go to the hospital.

BZ: What do you say to fans who say your style is boring?
LM: I am a martial artist, there is a lot of thought and strategy that goes into the way I fight…For some that is boring, I know, but I am beating the best in the world. After my fights I do not have nothing on my face, no scratches, no bruises. I am like a ghost — they can not find me. If that is boring, that is their opinion. But I will be there for long time WINNING. 

Zeidler notes that the interview was done through a translator. Unless that translator was Renato Sobral, it sounds like Machida may be trying to change his persona into something more brash. Not a heel necessarily, but cocky — an unkinder, ungentler version of his former self. Will some of that attitude transfer to the cage? An aggressive performance against Thiago Silva at UFC 94 next month could bolster his case as next in line for a title shot if he can score a stoppage victory.

Cagepotato Comments

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The Dragon- April 3, 2009 at 1:03 pm
What now.....bitches!?!
Anonymous- January 30, 2009 at 7:42 am
lyoto machid Vs brock lesner or keff jarden
Student- December 27, 2008 at 11:26 am

May I suggest that Lyoto Machida’s style is considered boring because his opponents do not respond to the hole they are put in with his surgical dissection of them and ability to read and move away from the attack without taking himself out of his range.

The UFC has judges and a point system. A great strategist and fighter like Machida uses that reality to put his opponents in a deep hole on points where they MUST know they will lose if the fight goes to decision. This is the intention. Once aware that they are losing and must come up big to win they SHOULD be highly motivated to open it up and try anything possible.

Those who do (and make mistakes), so far, have been introduced to the incredible skill of the man and destroyed. Those who don’t take the risks or try half-heartedly lose by majority decision. Those who do and have good defense go after him leaving few opportunities to capitalize for Machida and those fights are potentially split decisions or even potential draws.

Lyoto Machida is not a boring fighter without a lot of help from his opponents. Either they lack the skill to solve him or the guts to lay it all on the line. If more of his opponents had the balls to pull out all stops, in the face of certain defeat on points, Machida would be an exciting finishing fighter capitalizing on the mistakes desperate fighters can make.

IMO Machida is a great tactician with exceptional skills who shines a bright light on the weaknesses of the systems, styles and heart of his opponents.

Just my 2 cents.

Who he sent to the hospital: Rich Franklin, Stephan Bonner (both in 2003) Dimitri Wanderley (in 2006)
Jay Smith- December 7, 2008 at 7:50 pm
@ E Honda...Win!
The winner of the Rampage, Wandy fight will be the LHW champ in a year.
E Honda... Win!- December 6, 2008 at 6:54 pm
Machida and Silva should be a sweet fight. I am sad to see that one of them will get a loss however on their undefeated records, it could have been a bigger fight if both these guys got some more prominent wins under their belt before they fought each other.

Everyone is all over Machidas nuts right now and expect him to win the fight. Thiago Silva is a fucking BEAST!! and is becoming one of my favourite fighters to watch right now. Machida has to be careful of two things in this fight: 1. he doesn't get KTFO by Silva and 2. he doesn't win by another lack luster decision where he back peddles the entire fight.

Don't get me wrong I like Machida also and think he brings a unique aspect of fighting to the ring. But I think for his popularity and money making abilities he needs to finish Silva in this fight.

Oh and by the way the winner of this fight will be light heavy weight champ within a year.

AlphaDog- December 6, 2008 at 9:51 am
Dude ,
You're talking about Bonnar not Thiago Silva! Maybe Machida finished Bonnar TKO strikes but it was still a boring fight! Machida ran around and countered Bonnar only as Bonnar rushed in to engage. I do agree he has to talk trash to get noticed because his fights are that boring. I don't see him getting past Silva. He's a good fighter and if he does make it past Silva- Wanderlie or Shogun will destroy him
player from the south - December 6, 2008 at 7:37 am
ha ha
dude- December 5, 2008 at 10:31 pm
I've been a Machida fan for several months and I've got a good feeling about his upcoming bout with T. Silva. Machida's got an aggressive side (look up his fight against S. Bonnar) that he hasn't really shown in the UFC and T. Silva will put the pressure on him. It's the perfect match for The Dragon. The UFC has been giving Machida the run around and now he finally faces a real warrior in Silva. If Machida wins (which I think he will), and it won't be by decision, the UFC will have no other choice but give him a title shot. I understand why he's trash talking...maybe it's the only way the UFC will notice him. GO MACHIDA!
Tuf Guy- December 5, 2008 at 6:28 pm
I have 2 pubes and a very small penis
Joey- December 5, 2008 at 6:07 pm
Yes I do.

I think machida has yet to fight a guy as aggressive on the ground and on the feet as Shogun. Its easy to run when the bell rings, but if Machida gets clocked, Shogun begins to stalk around the ring, much like Wanderlai, then your fucked when that happens.
hooligun- December 5, 2008 at 5:31 pm
Machida = Skill.
MMA Gear Blog- December 5, 2008 at 5:04 pm

You think so?
Joey- December 5, 2008 at 4:15 pm
This guy has got some balls... Calling out Wanderlai and Shogun!!!!! Seriously?Shogun will fuck this guy doubt
Neogetter02- December 5, 2008 at 3:50 pm
AlphaDog- December 5, 2008 at 1:17 pm
I'm proud to say, I was just one of the opinions out there that thinks Machida is nothing but a BORING fighter. If he can back up his talk and finish Thiago Silva then I may have to think again about the quality of fighter Machida is. But if he just runs around the cage after sounding like Tito thats going to be very dissapointing!!
Jay Smith- December 5, 2008 at 1:12 pm
I don't know bro, I have to disagree with you. I don't think he is "exciting" to watch at all. I believe Machida, like I said before, is a great martial artist, but not a great fighter (I hope that makes sense to you). Martial arts aka self DEFENSE, is what he comes across as. A fighter, like Wandy or Liddell has perfected the OFFENSIVE style it takes to be a successful MMA fighter, and their reputation as knock out artists makes them "exciting" to watch.
Machida is a great competitor, and a pretty good fighter, but he will never become a champion until he adds a little controled aggression to his arsenal, and starts knocking some mutha fuckas out. If he needs an example, he can ask Silva how he finished him after they wake his ass up.
Speedy- December 5, 2008 at 12:56 pm
Kenny Florian is Machida 0.2 at best.
MMA Gear Blog- December 5, 2008 at 12:47 pm
Lyoto always talk shit after his fights, but it's all in portugues. I saw a show in Brazil call "passando a guarda" with Lyoto. He was talking mad shit.

Lyoto, tudo mundo vai apanhar de voce. :)
Tuf Guy- December 5, 2008 at 11:51 am
Anonymous- December 5, 2008 at 11:43 am
Man this dude [Lyoto Machida] blows hard!
I rather see Bader Lay N' Pray on someone then watch Lyoto spar wth someone.
drew- December 5, 2008 at 11:26 am
Lyoto Machida can now be referred to as "Lyoto MaNchida"
Jeff- December 5, 2008 at 11:01 am
Lyoto won't make it past Thiago, and if he does he won't make it past Wanderlei.

Basically once he fights a GOOD aggressive striker, he's toast. Wanderlei is the end-all for aggressive strikers, but Thiago is 13-0 coming off 8 tkos in a row and will shut people up about Lyoto before Wanderlei gets the chance.
just some dong- December 5, 2008 at 10:47 am
How can anyone not enjoy watching Machida work? He's such a smart fighter. He's mastered the cardinal rule of every combat sport: protect yourself at all times. It's like standup ju-jitsu: he takes very little damage, confuses his opponent, finds an opening, then attacks. I love watching the way he systematically breaks all these low-talent bullies (ahem... tito, joke-oju, even franklin... sorry ace). All these guys do is move forward and try to impose their will. This makes them good fighters, but they have nothing to fall back on when faced with a true martial artist like Machida, who doesn't just stand there and trade blows. That being said, Silva is a real bull. It will be intresting to see if the dragon's technique wins over agression this time.

Shit, there's another reason to love Lyoto. His nickname is the dragon.
CubicalGangster- December 5, 2008 at 10:41 am
This is honestly going to be the best fight 2009, i see Thiago wining by TKO, and then doing the same to Evans (i know, iknow all you Forest Griffin fans, but he is going to lose) and then youll have this almost unknown champion who will be become the next Anderson Silva. Seriously watch Thiago's FURY FC footage and see whats up.
Neogetter02- December 5, 2008 at 10:27 am
DAMN was lyoto on the rag??