Dana White Explains Why He Picked Gustafsson Over Machida

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Dana White is a man that tried to give back to the fans. When Machida defeated Dan Henderson at UFC 157 and was awarded the next shot at Jon Jones. Most of us were thinking why? We’ve already seen this bout before and there’s nothing to make us believe that it would end up being a different result. Sure Machida looked good in the first round, but then Jones came into his own and demolished the former UFC light heavyweight champion.

He recently explained to MMAfighting during the UFC 161 pre-fight conference on why Gustafsson got the nod over the man known as “The Dragon”.

“I said that we will give the fight to Lyoto Machida but, Jon Jones was like, ‘I annihilated Machida, I already fought Machida, I annihilated him, and I’ve never fought Gustafsson — me and Gustafsson have some beef and that’s the fight I really want.'”

This match is considerably better then a rematch that no one is asking to see, but it begs the question. Should fighters be able to hand pick their opponents? We have seen this happen a lot lately.

Georges St. Pierre passed on fighting Johny Hendricks to defend his title against Nick Diaz at UFC 158. Diaz had already lost his previous bout against Carlos Condit at UFC 143 and was finishing serving up his one year suspension for marijuana use.

What do you guys think? Should champions hand pick their opponents because of a grudge or should they just let Dana White and Joe Silva do their job and pick the best opponents available for them?

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  • Joe Hegg

    The fighters ARE the glitz and the glimmer. Once you sit atop your division and have destroyed the upper echelon of competition the fighter should have complete autonomy to window shop his competition. At the end of the day Dana and Joe are the ones that have the final nod on any matchup. All the debating over good fits bad fits who has earned it who hasn’t, (like the Aldo vs Pettis fight), its Dana and Joe who give the green light. I am not a Jones fan by any stretch BUT he has destroyed any and all who have stood in his way. I am a huge Machida fan but even I don’t want to see this fight. I agree with Jones i WANT to see this fight and i think the rest of the fans do as well.