Phil Davis was waiting for someone to give him a call. His wait is over.
Davis this past month in Las Vegas wasn’t really in the mood to call anyone out. The way he puts it, he never really is in the mood to call anyone out, anyway. He just waits, and boom – there’s a fight for him, just when he needs it.
And that’s kind of what happened recently. When Davis (11-1 MMA, 7-1 UFC) met with a handful of media members just before UFC 160 in Las Vegas, he was still waiting for a fight. And as MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) reported on Monday, now he’ll take on Lyoto Machida (19-3 MMA, 11-3 UFC) in the co-main event of UFC 163 this August in Rio de Janeiro.
“I don’t really look for fights,” Davis said in Las Vegas. “Fights just find me. That’s just the way I do things. That’s just the way I run it. So I’m just going to sit back on my couch for something to happen. Then I’ll answer my phone and fly wherever I have to fly to.”
He’ll have to fly to Brazil to meet Machida, a former light heavyweight champion who at one point was promised the next title shot against Jon Jones. Now it appears the Davis-Machida winner might get that crack.
Davis has won two straight. This past October in Rio, he submitted Wagner Prado in the second round. In April, he took Vinny Magalhaes to a unanimous decision victory at UFC 159. Magalhaes was a fighter who talked a little smack in Davis’ direction to get the fight made. And where “Mr. Wonderful” is concerned, there’s no issue there.
It wouldn’t have been an issue if one of UFC 160's winners, say Glover Teixeira, would’ve called him out, either. Doesn’t matter who – Davis will answer the call if that’s what the UFC wants.
“That’s what I do,” he said. “He calls me out, he wants to fight – cool. I’ll fight you. It’s not a problem. All you have to do is say, ‘Please. Do you wanna fight?’ I’ll fight you. After the fight, it was cool. (Magalhaes) came to the back, and he was gentleman. It was all good. … If Joe Silva says, ‘This is the guy you’re gonna fight,’ we fight.”
Before his fight with Magalhaes, Davis had to deal with a different fight. After TMZ reported about a domestic dispute involving Davis and his wife just days before UFC 159, he had all kinds of distractions to fight through.
Davis said those issues have “been worked out,” and that “obviously not everything you see on the Internet is true.”
But he told MMAjunkie.com that working through that issue during fight week was something he had to power his way through before he even got to the cage.
“Distractions aren’t necessarily something that’s new to me,” he said. “If you’ve ever had to lose 20 pounds, study for an exercise physiology final and go against one of the top guys in the nation and Big Ten (in wrestling at Penn State), you can handle it. It’s obviously a different kind of distraction, but it just comes down to stress.
“It put a lot of stress on me, and you have to be able to segment your life. When you go to work, you don’t bring your work home with you.”
In August, he’ll have the stress of fighting in Brazil – but at least that’s something he’s dealt with before.
For more on UFC 163, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.