As a young boy I dreamed of a day when titans would come down to earth and battle it out for supremacy for my entertainment. I would sit there, wide eyed, with my Leonardo action figure in one hand and a seven-eleven Slurpee in the other as these goliaths attempted to destroy one another. Unfortunately as I got older I realized that outside of playing “God of War,” this experience I dreamt of would never happen. But then, as if the angels above heard my wishes, they brought down two prime specimens in athletic fortitude and high-level fighting prowess to set off on a journey that would end in a head on collision course with one another, all for my entertainment.
The two freak athletes that I am talking about are Chris Weidman and Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida, who are set to due battle for the middleweight championship belt this Saturday, July 4, at UFC 175 in Las Vegas.
This fight truly is a collision course of two men who could not avoid each other. The story lines have been written over the past few years but for those of you who haven’t been paying attention, let me recap on how we got here.
Lyoto Machida, who comes from a family of ninja warriors, or karate masters to be honest, was bread to be a champion. In 2007 Machida entered the UFC and would rattle off eight wins in a row, including winning the light heavyweight belt from Rashad Evan and defending it against Mauricio Rua.
Since entering the UFC in 2011, Chris Weidman has came in like a wrecking ball, without the tongue out and twerking, and defeated some of the biggest names in the middleweight division as he accented up the rankings.
After Machida lost his belt and stumbled through the light heavyweight division, Machida dropped down to middleweight. Machida would win his next two fights in his new division and earn a place at the top of the rankings with a possible title shot in the near future. But with Machida’s training partner and close friend Anderson Silva as current middleweight titleholder it seemed as if that dream of being champion once again was fading away.
In 2013, Chris Weidman was given the chance to take on the reigning champion Anderson Silva in a fight many people assumed Weidman was not ready for. Weidman proved all the doubters wrong, knocking out Silva in the second round and becoming the first person to defeat the champion since 2006. Weidman would give Silva a rematch and just five months later Weidman would defeat him again, this time breaking his leg with a perfectly timed checking of a leg kick.
Weidman was now the undisputed champion of the middleweight division and had a list of fighters waiting in the wings to take a stab at him.
Weidman was set to defend his title against vicious veteran striker Vitor Belfort but after the UFC banned HGH (human growth hormones), which Belfort was using at the time; Weidman was forced to look else where for a fight.
Cue the epic Flash Gordon music please. With Anderson Silva out of the picture and Weidman in need of a fight, Machida would step up to take on the new champion.
Weidman vs Machida is a fight that’s suppose to happen. Both men have earned their stripes ten times over and have prepared for this moment all their lives. At this level, with this much skill involved I truly believe it is either mans fight to win. Machida has already tasted what it is like to be at the top while Weidman is just getting use to the feeling. Both men deserve to be champion but only one may hold the title.
When the cage closes behind these two warriors on Saturday I expect lighting and thunder to roar down from the sky. Bruce Buffer will give his usually introductions of each fighter then magically turn into a hawk and fly off into the night. Then when the two meet in the middle of the cage for instructions, the referee is not Herb Dean, instead it is Ivan Drago, who then looks at both fighters and says, “If he dies, he dies.”