After his controversial loss to Fabricio Werdum at UFC 85, Brandon “The Truth” Vera was so upset that he wanted to fight again, immediately. Ovbisouly his first choice was to take on Werdum, however he chose to move on to bigger and better things. Once the UFC came calling for their July 19th card, Vera jumped at the opportunity, even though it was on short notice.
“I told [the UFC] I wanted to fight again right away,” Vera told MMAJunkie.
Vera has stated many times that his goal is to become the UFC Champion at both the Heavyweight and Light Heavyweight divisions, even though the majority of his UFC fights have been above 205 pounds. Ideally, he would want to conquer the Heavyweight division first, then make his move down.
“(UFC President) Dana (White) was kind of joking around talking about 205 (pounds), and then he called me and he said, ‘If you want to fight right away, you can fight on the 19th at 205 (pounds),’” Vera stated. “And then they came with this whole list of opponents for me to fight, and I was like, ‘Hell yeah, hell yeah, hell yeah, hell yeah.'”
However, there was one fighter that Vera was unwilling to take on a month’s notice. True to his nickname, Vera spoke “The Truth” about declining the bout, where most other fighters would deny until their death that they ever shied away from a fight.
“For sure, I turned down the fight with (Lyoto) Machida,” stated Vera. “Don’t get me wrong. I’m down to fight Machida, but not in my first time cutting down to 205 on four weeks’ notice. I want to be ready for Machida. That bastard’s good. I want to make sure I’ve got good sparring and a good game plan for Machida.”
“Machida’s not somebody you can just jump in the cage with and fight. I don’t care who you are; if you think you can just beat Machida because you’re tougher than him, he’s probably going to whoop your ass,” Vera explained. “He doesn’t go in to destroy people and finish them. Man, you can’t hit him, and he just keeps touching you. People just get frustrated and pissed off. So, I did turn down the fight with Machida, but I’m down for sure to fight Machida, given good time.”
Machida is a top contender in the Light Heavyweight division, so it is understandable why Vera looked the other way. At a prefect 13-0 (5-0 in UFC), Machida is due a title shot. The odds would not be in Vera’s favor of walking away victorious given the circumstances, and three consecutive losses in the UFC could be devastating for Vera’s career at this point in time.
So instead, Vera will be taking on little known Reece Andy at UFC Fight Night 14.
“I know [Reece] is a three-time All-American wrestler,” Vera said. “I saw his match with Fabricio Werdum in Abu Dhabi. For sure he’s got some takedowns, and he looks pretty strong. I saw half of the second round of one of his fights.”
As far was what he expects Andy’s strategy to be,”He’s for sure going to try and take me down. His standup I’m not worried about. As long as I’m keeping my hands up, we should be OK on our feet. Just defend the takedown and work my stuff on the ground.”