Bader faced the current Light-Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones at UFC 126 and was finished in the first round. Following the loss he faced Tito Ortiz at UFC 132 and was heavily favored to beat Ortiz however Ortiz managed to upset the odds and finished Bader in the first round.
After back to back losses Bader faced Jason Brilz at UFC 139 and got the finish in the first round to improve his record to (13-2). Bader then faced former Light-Heavyweight Champion Rampage Jackson at UFC 144 he dominated Rampage and took the unanimous decision victory.
When he received the call to face Machida Bader was more than happy to accept and thinks a win over Machida will move him very close to a title shot.
“Why go backwards? I beat a guy who just fought for the title, then stepping up and fighting arguably a top three guy that just recently fought for the 205-pound belt. I’m knocking off these guys, I’m right there for a title shot. Those guys just fought for it,”
“I come out and have two impressive wins in a row against top five opponents, that’s saying something.”
In the last couple of years Bader had moved around camps before setting up his own gym with close friends Aaron Simpson and C.B. Dollaway as well as hiring a team of coaching staff. Bader is confident with his own gym and coaching staff in place he has given himself the best chance of success in future competition.
“I feel like we’re in the right place. We have the right blueprint now. We know what we’ve got to do. All the guesswork’s out. We know what it takes,”
“Now the coaching staff, Tom Vaughn and the guys found sparring partners that totally emulate Machida. We brought guys out from Vegas, brought guys out from around the valley and different parts of the country. I’ve seen Machida’s style hundreds of times in the training camp and in the cage in the gym, so I’m not going to be surprised by it.”
Bader is the underdog going into the UFC On FOX 4 bout with Machida and admits he relishes the role.
“I absolutely love it, coming in here and people doubting me and not expecting me to do much, or not expecting me to win. I love to go in there and show I’m evolved in every fight, surprise people and at the end of the fight have people go, ‘Wow, I did not think that was going to happen at all. I really underestimated him,”
“I love playing that role. There’s nowhere to go but up when you’re that big of an underdog. It just gives you that much more motivation to go in there and prove everybody wrong.”
For all the latest MMA news and fight updates stay tuned to BJPENN.COMTags: featured, lyoto machida, mma, MMA NEWS, ryan bader, ufc, ufc news