Change of opponents not a problem for Munoz
MANILA, Philippines – Filipino fighter Mark Muñoz was admittedly surprised to learn that he has a new opponent for his middleweight fight at UFC Fight Night on October 26 in Manchester, England.
Muñoz, popularly called “The Filipino Wrecking Machine,” was originally slated to fight Michael “The Count” Bisping. But Bisping suffered an eye injury and had to pull out of the fight. He was replaced by former UFC light-heavyweight champion Lyoto “The Dragon” Machida.
“It is kind of a crazy turn. I didn’t even know that Bisping was hurt, and then all of a sudden, I’m fighting Lyoto Machida in three weeks,” Muñoz said in an interview with Bleacher Report.
“I’m down to fight anyone at any time, but I have to admit, the whole thing kind of surprised me, because it all came in at the same time and was very last minute,” he added.
“But that is the nature of this game, and you have to be ready for anything.”
Muñoz said fighting Machida will be fine with him, even though “The Dragon” is his friend and a former training partner.
“He is a friend of mine and we have trained together in the past, but that isn’t something I have a problem with,” he said. “I’ve fought friends before and it’s nothing personal.”
Muñoz’s concerns now include adjusting his game plan to Machida, who is known for his unorthodox fighting style.
“I’ll make the adjustments in training and prepare for his style to make sure I am ready when I step into that cage,” Muñoz said. “It’s an abrupt turn. Machida has an unorthodox style that is difficult to duplicate, but at the same time, he’s never faced anyone who fights the way I do either.”
“I only have three weeks to prepare for him, but he only has three weeks to prepare for me as well,” he added.
Machida is fighting at middleweight for the first time. Muñoz, meanwhile, is trying to win his second straight fight after dominating Tim Boetsch in their UFC 162 clash last July.