Three weeks ago, Dan Henderson injured his knee in training and made every attempt to keep working through it. Henderson’s idea was he’d be able to tough it out and fight Jones at UFC 151. According to a report by Fighters Only Magazine, Dan Henderson’s entire coaching staff had to talk him out of fighting Jones. As we know, Hendo pulled out of the fight and the event was cancelled.
Then Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida was on tap to fight Jones at UFC 152 on Sept 22nd in Toronto, Canada, but declined the fight. Today a statement was put out by Lyoto on BlackHouseMMA.com to explain his decision:
BELEM, BRAZIL – Lyoto Machida is eager to get back to training, and have another shot at the UFC light heavyweight belt. However, with the proposed fight against Champion Jon Jones only 4 weeks away, Lyoto manifests that the deadline is unfeasible in order to have a training camp that is complete and worthy of his work.
Lyoto believes the bout could take place in Brasil at UFC 153, which will be held in Rio de Janeiro on October 13th, allowing him 6 weeks to prepare. “I want to serve the UFC and recapture the belt. I always respect my opponent. For those reasons, I must prepare myself in the manner I believe in.”