Ryan Bader and Lyoto Machida discussed their upcoming rematch at the Bellator on Showtime media day.
Below are excerpts from the questions that I asked both combatants ahead of this sequel that occurs within the framework of Bellator’s light-heavyweight grand prix.
Ryan Bader w/ Dylan Bowker
Greater redemption to be found in avenging prior losses to some of the aforementioned opponents through this field or in regaining that Bellator Light-Heavyweight title? Which takes precedence?
“Well, I’m in a good position where I get to do one right off the bat and then the other later. I have Machida first round. And that’s one, you know, one I’ve wanted to get back…Because I get to gauge myself and see how far I’ve grown from that fight. When I literally knew nothing in the striking department. If I do my part, I beat him and then I win another fight and I’m in the finals for the belt.”
“That side has definitely got some great fights. Who knows who comes out with a belt on that side? So I just need to do my part. In doing my part, I’m going to give my ultimate goal which is to get that light-heavyweight belt back.”
Ryan Bader and Lyoto Machida
Lyoto Machida w/ Dylan Bowker
I’m just kind of curious with this being a rematch, what are some of the different stylistic tells and overall developments in Ryan Bader’s game that you see as compared to the first time that you guys fought late-2012?
“So, I think that we are always changing ourselves. Day by day, we have to change. Of course, we cannot change everything. Because we have our principles, our essence. But overall, we always change. So I cannot consider fights. It’s already past. And now I have to move on to other fights. Just focus on my next fight against Ryan Bader. He is a different fighter, I’m a different fighter, more experience, more fights under my belt since that fight. Now is a different moment.”