Here’s something what most Filipino mixed martial arts (MMA) enthusiasts wouldn’t want to happen. The Mark “Filipino Wrecking Machine” Muñoz’s scheduled fight with Michael Bisping will not happen in October 26 Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Fight Night 30 in Manchester, England (home of Bisping). The chance to beat Bisping is already seen and predicted, and a possible Middleweight Championship shot for Muñoz. Instead, UFC fight card holders decided to bring in Lyoto Machida in place of Bisping.
It’s not that Muñoz is not ready to fight. But Machida’s level of fighting and readiness is a little bit ahead of Muñoz by almost a year. Give Muñoz two or three more fights and he will be ready to take on Machida.
The initial plan of Mark Muñoz is to get Lyoto Machida as his training partner in preparation for his fight with Michael Bisping. Muñoz was the wrestling coach of the same fight gym where Machida rolls. The sudden change of opponent is good for UFC and their fight fans, but certainly not good for Muñoz at least for the moment.
However, a few advantages for Muñoz includes Machida’s effort to put down his weight for the bout, while Muñoz is comfortably training within his weight division. Another plus for the “Filipino Wrecking Machine” is his ability to switch styles under stress, while Machida’s style is to always wait for the opening, which Muñoz won’t give easily. This is also the first time for Machida (light heavyweight) to fight in a lower division.
Fight stat for Muñoz is 13 wins and 3 losses. Fight stat for Machida is 19 wins and 4 losses. Both trained together in the past and both know each other’s weaknesses. If “The Filipino Wrecking Machine” beat Machida on UFC 30, it should be a clear ticket to finally be a top contender for The UFC Middleweight Division.
Mumbakki Daniel Foronda is an MMA champion and a Filipino martial arts expert. He is currently based in Russia where he is a combat tactical trainer to the country’s Military Special Forces.