Lyoto Machida’s Muay Thai coach Rafael Cordeiro took some jabs at Machida’s opponent and middleweight champion Chris Weidman this Saturday. Many are saying that Machida has a weak chin, and can’t handle Weidman’s power, however Cordeira refuted those comments to MMAFighting.com saying:
“You can’t say Lyoto has a weak chin. That’s a lie. Lyoto fought and defeated bigger guys. He’s a world-class striker. He has the experience and the talent, and I say he will knock Weidman out.
“If Chris thinks he’s going there with that little hand and that he’ll simply take him down and lay and pray, he’s dead wrong. Lyoto will knock him out. When you fight the champion you have to dominate, leave no doubts.”
Given Machida’s elite level striking, and knack for being an elusive counter-striker, many are expecting Weidman to use his wrestling to take Machida down, something Cordeiro is expecting.
“Absolutely. We will make him go for the takedown,” he said. “Lyoto is ready for this type of fight, and he has great counter attacks. I’m a coach for a long time, and I’ve seen great athletes in great fights, and I feel this is Lyoto’s moment.
“I won’t underestimate Chris Weidman, but Mousasi is tougher than him. Mousasi is a brawler, and Lyoto fought five rounds standing against him. Lyoto will go straight forward, going for the knockout. Lyoto will knock Chris Weidman out.”
“I like to work with combinations from different angles, defending and attacking, and that fits perfectly with Lyoto’s game,” he said. “He’s more offensive now, he believes more in his own game now.
“This is my third camp with Lyoto, and I’m impressed with him,” Cordeiro added. “He gave his life in training, has tons of experience, and he’s capable of absorbing what we teach and add to his game without changing his style. He has added more weapons to his game and he will use them against Weidman.
“It’s going to be an interesting fight. Lyoto will show that a new middleweight champion is coming.”