Dana White: Lyoto Machida Accepted Fight, Then Demanded “Anderson Silva Money”

Written by Tom Ngo
July 13th, 2011

UFC Light Heavyweight Lyoto Machida

Do you remember earlier this morning when Mrs. Lyoto Machida claimed her husband turned down the rematch with Rashad Evans due to its last-minute nature and he didn’t want to disappoint the fans with a bad performance? Well, if you ask UFC president Dana White, that was just a bunch of Brazilian blah, blah, blah.

“Machida accepted the fight [at UFC 133],” White told MMAJunkie Wednesday evening. “We knew for a couple days this was going down, and Machida accepted the fight. Then when we called back and said, ‘OK, we’re going to make this fight,’ Machida’s people came back and said, ‘We’ll tell you what. You pay us what you pay Anderson Silva, and we’ll take the fight.’ This was after they had already agreed to take the fight.

“I said, ‘Are you [expletive] kidding me? I’ll tell you what. You tell Machida he achieves what [expletive] Anderson Silva has achieved, then maybe he’ll make Anderson Silva money. Have a nice day.’”

With the shrewd maneuver, “The Dragon” (or at least his management) may have permanently entered the worst place in MMA – White’s doghouse. Ed Soares typically handled Machida’s business affairs, but he told Tatame earlier today that his partner, Jorge Guimarães, was spearheading the negotiations for the August 6th scrap in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

There was talk that Machida backed out because White wouldn’t guarantee a title shot if he went up 2-0 on Evans. Considering we’re only 24 days away from showtime, that would be a logical reason for Machida to decline the critical contest. You always want to make sure the juice is worth the 11th hour squeeze.

However, if you believe White, it was all about the dinheiro all along. Mixed martial arts is a professional sport, don’t act too surprised…

After initially turning down the opportunity to rematch Evans, Tito Ortiz stepped up to the plate despite the fact he’s just 11 days removed from his UFC 132 victory over Ryan Bader.

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