UFC Light Heavyweight Alexander Gustafsson’s bout with Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC on Fox 5: Henderson vs. Diaz was generally thought to be a #1 contender’s match for a shot at champion Jon Jones. After the post-fight press conference last night though it looks like Gustafsson may have to face another top contender before getting his shot.
“If I was him, I’d want to get another fight in before taking on Jon Jones. He could fight again. I’m hearing Dan Henderson’s knee isn’t better, so maybe Gustafsson should fight Machida next,” said UFC president Dana White.
“I want to stay active, and I want to fight. I’ll fight whenever. I was away for a long time. The last time I fought was in April, and that was too long. To wait till summer again, that would be too long. I want to fight for the belt, and if they give me one before that, it doesn’t matter. I’ll fight whoever the UFC gives me,” responded Gustafsson.
Machida had been expected to face Henderson at UFC 157 in Anaheim on February 23, 2013. That card will be headlined by a women’s Bantamweight title fight between Ronda Rousey and Liz Carmouche.
Ironically both Machida and Henderson had also been promised title shots (as had Rua) before being booked opposite one another. Henderson infamously missed his title shot when he tore a ligament in his knee that forced the cancellation of UFC 151 when Jones refused to face last-second substitute Chael Sonnen.
Machida was offered the next shot at Jones at UFC 152 but felt he wouldn’t have enough time to prepare.
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