UFC light-heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida and #1 contender Quinton Jackson are letting some cats out of some bags this morning. First we have the above image taken from the homepage of Machida’s official site, which announces that Machida and Jackson will be fighting each other in September — we’re guessing at UFC 103, since that show is currently without a main event, though the Couture/Nogueira card is also earlier that month.
But here’s the weird part: TUF 10 is slated to premiere in September — and weren’t Machida and Rampage supposed to be coaching against each other? Well, Rampage will definitely be a coach on the show (visual proof after the jump), but new reports indicate that the Dragon will be sitting this season out.
So here’s the deal: After passing along word that Lyoto Machida won’t be participating in TUF 10, Fighters Only has confirmed that it’ll be Rampage vs. Rashad Evans as the season’s coaches. Really. Black on Black Crime: the Series. It kind of makes sense, since fans want to see that scrap no matter what happens with the Machida vs. Jackson title fight. Plus, Jackson and Evans already have a rivalry in place, which should translate to good reality television. Unfortunately, this means Machida doesn’t get a popularity bump from the reality show, but hey, there will be plenty of time to promote him as the UFC’s light-heavyweight champion.
Here’s the real concern — will filming another season of TUF distract Rampage from preparing for Machida? Shouldn’t he be spending the next four months studying the ways of the karateka?