UFC 123 Rampage Jackson vs. Lyoto Machida: A Head-To-Toe Breakdown
This weekend is about redemption for two men. On one side you have Quinton "Rampage" Jackson, who has been left with nagging questions as to whether he even wants to fight anymore now that he's been starring in movies.
On the other side, you have Lyoto "The Dragon" Machida, a man who up until last this past spring was a puzzle yet to be solved. That was until "Shogun" Rua went ahead and smashed through the real life Ryu faster than you can say "Hadouken!"
So what kind of match up do you get when you have a power puncher vs. an elusive counter puncher? Well the folks at B/R are going to give you a breakdown of who will come out with the victory.
At UFC 113, Shogun exposed us to the game plan needed to defeat Machida:
- Aggressive Striking
- Close off the cage
- Minimize the distance so that Machida has no room to lunge in and attack.
Enter Rampage. He has the potential to take this match up if he reverts back to the Rampage of UFC 75 where he came out swinging against Dan Henderson.
If we can see this type of fighter enter the Octagon on Saturday night, Lyoto may be in for a rough time.
Between the two of them, the combined victories via submissions is less than 10 with Rampage holding the majority of those victories. However, make no mistake, I wouldn't necessarily call Jackson a submission specialist.
Where Jackson's strength lies is in his wrestling and his brute power, but in Machida you have team Blackhouse as his camp, and that can make all the difference in the world.
Under the Noguiera brothers, Machida has a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and could conceivably take the fight to the ground if he needs to.
If you have never seen the Pride FC version of Rampage, it was quite a site to behold. When you got slammed, it's like he makes the Earth shake using your body.
We haven't seen that Rampage for a long time, but he's there lying in wait, and there is frankly no way that Machida can counter that kind of power.
With his pouncing and lunging strikes that mimic a fencer, Lyoto Machida cannot be outmatched when it comes to the speed game.
If you watched the UFC 114 match up between Jackson and Rashad Evans, the speed of "Suga" proved to be too much for the gun shy Jackson which could be attributed to Rampage not having fought for just over a year.
However, now that he's gotten a 2010 fight under his belt, he must be careful when dealing with a man as gazelle - like as Machida; one slip up on Jackson's part and it's over.
Lets face it, Machida doesn't enjoy getting hit. He's gone so long without getting tagged really well that when Shogun rocked him once the fight went to the ground during their rematch earlier this year, there was a look of panic on his face.
Rampage on the other hand, knows how to take a punch, and won't be easily phased by Machida's power.
While Jackson has admitted to not liking to train too hard for his fights, this factor could be amplified even further now that Rampage has starred in the summer blockbuster, The A - Team.
With Machida though, there is no question of his heart. He's studied Shotokan Karate from a very young age, and this training has helped mold him into someone who has the mental fortitude to take charge in the Octagon.
Plus honestly.. The guy drinks his own urine, how can you doubt his toughness?
OVERALL WINNER: Rampage
If Rampage can create that pressure I mentioned in earlier slides, then Jackon can easily secure the victory, but if he comes out flat in the first round then Machida will take him down very quickly.