UFC on Fox 4: Four Fighters, One Shot
By Breanna Armstrong
Four fighters, two light heavyweight fights, two winners, one shot at the title. UFC on Fox 4 took place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, on August 4. The event was most anticipated for the two light heavyweight bouts, Mauricio Rua vs. Brandon Vera and Lyoto Machida vs. Ryan Bader. The fighter with the best victory received a chance at the title to fight against the winner of UFC 151’s bout between Jon Jones and Dan Henderson, which will take place at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, on Sept. 1.
Mauricio Rua (21-6) former UFC light heavyweight champion returned to the cage at UFC on Fox 4, after surviving 5-rounds with Dan Henderson at UFC 139, just 9 months ago. Though Rua lost by a decision to Henderson, his prestige and perseverance in the octagon was recognized enough to land him the main event fight against Brandon Vera.
Prior to UFC on Fox 4, Brandon Vera (12-6) was last seen in the cage in October 2011, where he defeated Eliot Marshall by a unanimous decision. But the motivation restored in Vera for this bout against one of his “heroes” was the main subject leading up to this fight. And it was the momentum behind Vera that pushed the entire fight between he and the former champion.
The two light heavyweights had a four-round battle ending with Rua laying on a heavy combination of punches to Vera that was stopped by the referee at 4:09 into the fourth round.
After the fight at the press conference, the floor became Brandon Vera’s as he described his fight in the cage against Rua to be a “moral victory.”
“I got to fight one of my heroes,” Vera said. “I can’t hang my head on this one, I proved to myself and my fans out there that I’m not going anywhere, I’m still in the mix.”
“Brandon Vera got his respect back tonight. He deserves every ounce of it,” said Dana White, after the fight.
“The Truth” Brandon Vera is back.
Though Rua’s victory was not an easy one, it was the winner of the bout between Ryan Bader and Lyoto Machida that will go on to fight for the UFC Light Heavyweight title.
Ryan Bader (14-3) and Lyoto Machida (18-3) battled it out in one of the best fights of the night on Saturday. In the second round, Bader attempted a punch that was countered by Machida’s fist that made Bader hit the ground, only to be met with a combination of punches from his opponent that was stopped by the referee at 1:32 into the second round.
The former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Lyoto Machida secured his shot at the title with that impressive KO, giving the Brazilian a chance to take the title back from the winner of UFC 151’s Jones vs. Henderson fight.
“Of course he has a weak point.” Machida said on the possibility of fighting Jones. “But it’s very hard to say because Jones is a very elusive fighter. All the time he changes his style, sometimes he kicks, sometimes he punches, he has good wrestling. Maybe I have to train more wrestling.”
Lyoto Machida’s top performance put him into the contender position that all four light heavyweights were fighting for at UFC on Fox 4. He will have his chance to fight for the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship Title that was once his.